Jean Bjorling Young ’70

Posted on February 15th, 2011 by

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A group of 6 current Gustavus students visited and volunteered at the Saboba Medical Centre in Northern Ghana this January. The group traveled using contacts from Africa Partners Medical, a service organization founded at the Mayo Clinic. The medical director of the Saboba Center is a proud Gustie, Dr. Jean Young ’70.

She came to Gustavus thanks to recruiter Cecil Eckhoff. Cecil had a meeting in Chicago that was canceled so he then decided to drive 160 miles across the state to the tiny town of Oneida, IL, to speak with Jean about Gustavus. That afternoon sealed it for Jean; she never applied anywhere else. Since graduating from Gustavus, Jean Young went through advanced medical training at Iowa and Tulane to become a pediatric surgeon and tropical disease specialist. She has been serving the people of rural Ghana through medical evangelism since 1988.

The group of 6 current Gusties were grateful for the opportunity to shadow and learn from Dr. Young. They were kept busy in Saboba as they volunteered in the lab, the wards, and the operating room helping the staff in whatever capacity they could. One of their accomplishments of the trip was to clean out two large storage rooms full of donated medical supplies that had yet to be unpacked. They learned about the challenges and rewards of being a rural doctor in a developing country, and were honored to be welcomed into the Saboba community so warmly. Dr. Young was a gracious and inspiring host for the group.

In the group photo: James Ebeling ’11, Kendra Kesty ’11, Brian Smith ’11, Courtney Kerestes ’11, Alex Chubick ’13, Brianna Jobe ’11, and Jean Young ’70. The Gustavus group met the local Kiteek chief at the beginning of their visit.

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