Boone PA students volunteer at back-to-school event

One month after launch, the Wake Forest PA program’s Boone campus is hitting full stride. Growing pains have been kept to a minimum as staff members at Appalachian State University and the Appalachian Regional Healthcare System have worked tirelessly to bring the PA students into the fold. Without their contributions, the transition up the mountain would not have been possible.

“Since we’ve been up here, everything has drastically exceeded my expectations,” said first-year student Tim Holcomb. “From the IT support staff to our beautiful facility, my experience thus far has been wonderful.” Holcomb is an Appalachian State alumnus and long-time High Country resident who has worked as an EMT and a medical assistant in the area. “I feel very privileged to be a part of the inaugural class in Boone,” he said, “particularly knowing how excited this community is about our presence.”

Classmate Ansley Carnes shares Holcomb’s enthusiasm. “I didn’t know what to expect, but I really can’t believe the reception we’ve received. Everyone has been so incredibly kind and excited to have us.” Carnes was an undergraduate at Wake Forest and recently moved from Winston-Salem to Boone. “Even though we’re Wake Forest students, it really feels like we’re a part of this unique community.”

This warm reception has already inspired the Class of 2016 to get involved in the community, beginning with the Quiet Givers organization of Watauga County. Quiet Givers’ annual Back to School Festival is a community project designed to bring relief to families that struggle to meet the demands of back-to-school shopping. On August 1, Boone-based Wake Forest PA students dropped off several boxes of school supplies at the organization’s Pack the Bus fundraiser, and they also plan to volunteer at the Back to School Festival on August 9.

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Ginna Edwards, Morgan Jackson, Ansley Carnes, and Jordyn Reisenauer at Pack the Bus

The Boone campus Community Service Committee, co-chaired by Jordyn Reisenauer and Rebecca Vaglio, has led the effort to get involved with Quiet Givers and hopes to begin working with other local organizations in the near future. “Pack the Bus was important to our class because it was a way for us to immediately get involved and help out local families,” said Reisenauer. “With the beginning of the school year right around the corner, we saw this as a quick opportunity to serve the community that has been so welcoming to us.”  [written by J.T. LaBruyere, Class of 2016]

 


 

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