Highly credentialed REI resident staff live year-around in Laos to train medical staff at the major hospitals in the capital city of Vientiane. Their concentrations include clinical pediatrics, neonatal and pediatric intensive care, general surgery, and general and medical English. Short-term professionals also present semi-annual seminars in executive leadership and management.
The REI resident team has worked alongside Laotian leaders and English department faculty to lay the foundation for a
3-year medical English curriculum at the University of Health Sciences, and the REI apprentice program allows young university grads to teach medical English for two years, or for a gap-year prior to entering medical school.
Laos is landlocked by China to the north, Vietnam to the east, Thailand and Cambodia to the south, and Myanmar to the west. It is one of the world’s last countries governed by a Communist Party, along with China, Cuba, North Korea, and Vietnam. But other than an occasional Communist Party flag flying over the entry-way of government buildings or party-member businesses, you notice little difference between Lao and most of its neighboring non-Communist countries. And its 7,000,000 people are extraordinarily friendly and hospitable!
Where can a heart for “building people to build nations” take you? For Spencer Seballos--all the way to Laos with a Fulbright teaching placement. After a short 6-week internship in 2015 through REI, Spencer decided to take a gap year from 2016-2017 before starting Medical school in Cleveland. Part of his motivation to return to Laos came from the opportunities his family has been given. “My grandparents immigrated to the US from the Philippines for their medical training, and I wish to repay these educational opportunities that they, and now I, have received through work in health care, medical education, and research in developing nations.”