Terence Gipson, Michigan State University
Terence Gipson, a senior student at Michigan State University, serves as the program liaison for the International Engagement in Mexico Study Abroad Program. For the past four years, he has been involved with the Mexican National System for Integral Family Development and the Pan American Health Organization as a policy consultant working to improve health services accessibility and adoption standards throughout Latin America. His passion for international service has truly become a staple of his work, and has propelled him towards pursuing a Ph.D. in Health Services Research and Health Policy to continue making an impact on the world’s most fragile societies. Terence’s unyielding dedication to serving others has captured the attention of the global community, cultivating enthusiasm for volunteering that others will surely follow.
-Lou Anna Simon
Community engagement in many ways has become an essential part of who I am as both a student and global citizen. For me, community engagement exists beyond simply being an action of good-will, but more explicitly, an adhesive of sorts that binds us together for the sake of improving the human condition. As a Global Studies in the Arts and Humanities major, I focused my academic studies on population health and policy reform in order to adjoin my research with the passion I have to make positive societal impacts. By doing so, I’ve been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to assist in leading one of the nation’s largest collegiate international service programs. Since 2012, I have facilitated more than 350 undergraduate and graduate students in Mexico to engage them with Mexican social service agencies through volunteerism, while also providing research-based consultation to state legislators resulting in significant policy reform. Perhaps what I have applied most in my life since becoming involved through this program has been a renewed urgency in getting others involved. This, for me, is where my affinity for helping others lies; in the ability to transcend the service into meaningful life experiences for everyone.