Medical missions have always been an integral component of the Lloyd L. Gregory School of Pharmacy (GSOP). The school sponsored its first medical mission trip to Ecuador in 2003 and the program has blossomed since, growing from one trip per year to four or five with 70 to 90 students attending each summer. Among pharmacy schools, GSOP is distinctive not only for the number of medical missions conducted each year but for their spiritual focus.
Mission teams have treated countless patients, and filled thousands of prescriptions in countries around the world, including the Amazon River, Belize, Bolivia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Taiwan, Uganda and Zambia, and in the U.S., Belle Glade, Fla. and Alaska.
Despite the difficult physical conditions of mission trips, GSOP students receive invaluable on-the-job training and are able to put their knowledge and skills to the test. They have conducted numerous health screenings, distributed educational resources, planned activities for local children, exercised care and compassion, and most importantly, helped many individuals start a relationship with Jesus Christ. Upon their return, many of the teams present their experiences and impact of the trips during the school's weekly pharmacy chapels.
Due to the success of GSOP's mission trips, The Gregory Center for Medical Missions was created in 2013. The center's purpose is to guide and direct the school's medical missions while also providing timely and insightful models for other pharmacy schools to use.
In outreach efforts to the larger pharmacy community, GSOP faculty, led by Dr. Dana Brown, published a four-part series in the Annals of Pharmacology on the implementation of medical mission trips. In addition, faculty members have developed various articles and presentations to share GSOP's expertise in missions.
GSOP receives generous donations each year from benefactors of the University to provide medical and other supplies.
The Great Commission Pharmacy Mission Scholarship
The Great Commission Mission Scholarship recognizes rising first, second and third-year students who will be attending a GSOP medical mission trip. The recipients of this scholarship are selected based on a written essay where students describe their reasons for participating in a mission trip and what attributes they will offer to the team. The recipients also must be in good academic standing and demonstrate financial need. Click here to learn more.
Speaking of The Gregory Center for Medical Missons...
"As we have conducted more than 30 medical mission trips in 13 countries, we can give other pharmacy schools the tools they need to implement a missions program. If they don't have to reinvent the wheel or start from scratch, they may be more likely to want to do this." — Dean of the Lloyd L. Gregory School of Pharmacy Dr. Mary Ferrill