UC McMicken College of Arts and Sciences major Felicia Rinaldi recently took her first trip to Asia.
But it wasn’t a vacation. Instead, Felicia was immersed in a very rich culture, while educating and helping others.
An Archbishop McNicholas High School graduate and Choose Ohio First Scholar at UC, Felicia traveled with four other UC students to Sri Lanka for two weeks for a pilot project between the International Leadership Collaborative and International Admissions.
The first part of the project involved giving a presentation about UC and the benefits of studying in the United States to an assembly of high school students from multiple schools in Colombo, Sri Lanka. After the presentation, Felicia and others partnered with one of those high schools to put on a health camp in a rural area of the country, Kitulgala. The health camp brought in four physicians to treat patients and had a pharmacy where patients could then get their prescriptions filled for free. The doctors treated 400 patients.
“This created an amazing experience since many of the people in Kitulgala are unable to travel to see doctors, and thus, do not get the medical attention they need. “The health camp was one of my favorite parts about the trip since I want to go into the medical field,” stated Felicia.
The Asian experience is not one Felicia will soon forget.
“I stayed with a local family, we were able to visit temples and learn about Buddhism, visit ancient ruins to learn about the history of the country, as well as travel around to different cities in the country. I guess the main thing that stuck with me was how rich their culture is and how friendly and welcoming all the Sri Lankans were towards us.”