Irene Lee, class of 2017 (2015 RAM student co-leader)

Irene Lee discussing nicotine replacement therapy

Irene Lee discussing nicotine replacement therapy

RAM is a one-of-a-kind experience that many people wait all year for, myself included. As a returning volunteer of RAM, I could not have had a better experience. This time around, I was able to grasp just how valuable our services are in this underserved area of Wise, Va.

Most people cannot afford health care and therefore put off seeking the necessary care they need. In particular, one gentleman I spoke with was newly diagnosed with diabetes in its late stages, experiencing diabetic neuropathy, and could not afford physician visits, along with his diabetic medications and testing supplies.

I was able to have an in-depth conversation with him about his medications and the importance of being aware of the complications that can occur with diabetes. But more importantly, I was able to give a lending ear to someone who wanted someone to talk to. The very next day, that same gentleman waved to get my attention to say hi. I was surprised he was able to recognize me from a distance but was reminded that simply listening to someone’s story can make a significant impact on his or her life.

We, as students, are not only there to volunteer our time and services to provide the utmost care to a population in need, but we are there to learn from the people around us. Everyone has a unique story to tell, and taking the time to listen shows that you truly care.

VCU School of Pharmacy student RAM leaders Irene Lee (left) and Serena Barden with School of Nursing RAM participants

VCU School of Pharmacy student RAM leaders Irene Lee (left) and Serena Barden with School of Nursing RAM participants