Dean Gulas Returns to Haiti


January 5, 2011

Charles Gulas, PhD, dean of the School of Health Professions was in Haiti when a devastating earthquake rocked the country on Jan. 12, 2010. As of Jan. 3, Gulas is back in Haiti for three weeks to work in the city of Deschappelles at Hôpital Albert Schweitzer (HAS). This marks his fourth trip to Haiti.  As he has done previously, Gulas will post photos and updates of his experience on his blog, drgulas.com.

During his visit, Gulas will teach in the Rehabilitation Technician Training Program he helped to establish at HAS. Students he began teaching in 2009 graduated from their program last fall and are now working at the hospital.

“I am very committed to this project,” he said. “Our students felt so helpless after the earthquake and now are able to help rehabilitate members of their community. The Haitians value education and are very grateful for our program. I feel like I gain more than I give when I go.”

A prosthetic program has also been started at HAS and more than 500 people have been provided with artificial legs. With all the injuries that resulted from the earthquake, these new rehabilitation practitioners are desperately needed, Gulas said. A recent series of video stories created by MSNBC feature the work being done at HAS with a young prosthetic patient. Watch the first video here and view the slide show here.

When the earthquake hit, in honor of the work being done by Gulas and his colleagues, and in a humanitarian service effort, the Maryville community began raising money to support HAS. To date, nearly $3,500 has been collected. Contributions are still being accepted online.


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