My first two weeks in Platte, South Dakota have been filled with adventure both in the clinic and the community. I was warmly welcomed by my host family who has graciously provided meals, adventures, and an apartment that was filled with smells of freshly baked banana bread upon our arrival. The providers, staff, and patients in the clinic have also been welcoming. They have been eager to educate and happy to help with any questions I may have.
My experience in Platte has supplemented my academic learning in the classroom. For example, Dr. Bentz has asked me for input in diagnosing, allowing me to test my classroom knowledge with practical diagnostic skills. I have also been asked questions by other clinicians in an effort to test my memory of important concepts and pathologies. Connecting information gained in an academic setting with clinic experiences has provided a richer way to remember knowledge that I will be utilizing one day as a clinician.
When I found out that I was going to Platte, I knew that I wanted to experience all the town had to offer. After the first day of being in clinic, our host family invited us to their son’s baseball game in a nearby town; and in the following day, myself and the other REHPS student were invited to go fishing on the Missouri River. These kind gestures are only a few examples of how the Platte community has invited us into their lives. We have also golfed, kayaked, eaten at local restaurants, and participated in other activities in the Platte area. So, although the clinic experience has been enriching, engaging in Platte’s community has allowed for another layer of enjoyment.