This real-world focus teaches our students to be agile, confident, innovative, and culturally sensitive—all of which helps land them jobs and rise quickly into leadership roles, where they help address the healthcare challenges of our time.
We can tell you all this, but we’d rather show you.
In the spirit of illustrating the Bouvé culture through specific examples, we invite you to meet some of the students, faculty, and alumni who embody our unique brand of education. Scroll through the stories and click on the ones you find intriguing.
Justine Newman plans to become a forensic pathologist, a career that requires her to go to both medical school and law school. But first, she created a co-op at a county coroner’s office to make sure she had the stomach for it.
“Co-op is a great way to find out if what you think you want, is really what you want to do.
I needed to be around dead bodies, to see them and smell them, to be sure that I could do this.”
For 13 years, professor Lorna Hayward has led a trip to Ecuador, where students provide physical therapy to children in two orphanages. In addition to providing therapy to the children, they helped train the local staff and had to and navigate the surprising differences in Ecuadoran culture.
“Ecuador forces students to learn cultural competency and awareness. This is why this trip is so important. You can’t teach advocacy and social responsibility unless you’re doing it.”
As a nursing student, Tibbitt found her calling while working with the homeless on Northeastern’s mobile health van, which brings quality healthcare to underserved populations around the city.
“What I’ve learned from my experiences on the van and elsewhere is that if you equip people with education, they’ll make the right decisions.”
On his way to becoming a physician assistant, Klaus Grim provided healthcare services in Spain, Thailand, Ecuador, and thanks to donor support, a small Texas town along the Mexican border.
“Northeastern was the only program I applied to,” he said. “I was attracted to the global focus. That was very important to me.”
When Northeastern students visit Ghana each summer for a month-long course to compare healthcare and education systems, they do more than learn about nationalized healthcare and the role of traditional medicine—they also give back in a big way.
“It is one thing to learn about being culturally competent in a classroom, but I think you need to immerse yourself in the day-to-day living of a society to understand its priorities and decision making.”
Driscoll spent his final co-op delivering healthcare in the Moria refugee camp in Greece, where he witnessed the desperate lives of Syrian refuges.
“It just breaks your heart. They realize that they’ve escaped hell, only to make it to a new form of hell.”
Sean O’Neill never envisioned himself as an entrepreneur, but when the PharmD alum saw the number of medication errors being made in his Philadelphia hospital, he formed a technology company to solve the problem.
“When I was a pharmacy student in the 1990s, there were basically two career paths—hospital and retail pharmacy. I’m proud to say that the school I went to has been injecting entrepreneurship into its curriculum.”
Waud was working as a physical therapist when she created and marketed an invention to help elderly patients use their walkers properly.
“Practitioners in the field are often the first to spot needs, and the companies of today are accepting ideas for innovation from the outside.”
Kristin Greenwood won the 2019 Distinguished Educator award lead role in curriculum reform for acute care physical therapy.
“My goal has been to shift the focus from textbook education to active clinical decision-making. I conducted a full curriculum audit to focus more on thinking in action rather than thinking about action.”
While completing her advanced nursing degree, Rachel Abarbanel also earned a graduate certificate in experience design so that she can make healthcare less intimidating for patients.
“My goal is to eventually open my own clinic as a nurse practitioner. I want it to be a diverse wellness center, offering psychiatric services, but also counseling for everything from nutrition to finance.”
When Kelly Szaniawski arrived at Northeastern in 2015, her plan was to follow in her father’s footsteps and become a doctor. Her career path took an interesting turn the following year, when she joined Northeastern’s business professional fraternity and soon discovered that she wanted to approach healthcare from a different perspective.
“I realized that I have a passion for healthcare, but the mindset of a business person. So many systems depend on one another that there’s a space between traditional healthcare careers that need more attention. Understanding these overlapping systems is a key component to achieving healthcare equity.”
Kim plans to use his degree to become a healthcare entrepreneur, so in his freshman year, he founded a club that brings together student innovators from pharmacy, engineering, computer science and more.
“You don’t have to start a company to be an entrepreneur. You just have to learn the mindset. Where some people see a problem as a burden, an entrepreneur sees it as a possibility. You say, ‘There must be a better way of doing this.’”
Thakur is exploring a novel cannabinoid receptor that could pave the way for new medicines to treat opioid addiction and a host of other diseases. If his strategy is successful, it could lead to an new class of drugs for pain, PTSD, eating disorders, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, glaucoma, and drug abuse.
“This is where the gem of this discovery lies. There are millions of Americans currently addicted to opioids.”/blockquote>
To help teenage boys and girls avoid dating violence, Rizzo has created group therapy programs for girls aqnd an innovative video game to promote communication between boys and their parents.
“Dating violence increases the burden on law enforcement, healthcare, and the criminal justice system. To prevent this type of violence, you have to start early.”
By the end of their second year as undergraduate nursing students, Solomon and Caron were presenting their research at a national conference in Seattle.
“When we entered this program, we thought we were going to be bedside nurses, and that’s all there was. We had no idea that the field of nursing research could be so exciting. This is why I came to Northeastern. We would never have had this kind of opportunity elsewhere.”
Ansong parlayed her internship with the Boston Health Commission into an award-winning capstone project, which landed her a job on the frontlines of the opioid crisis.
“I’m interested in innovation and public health problem-solving. My job allows me to learn about program development and fostering community involvement.”
Nicolle Potvin earned a master’s degree in counseling psychology so she could help others find their way out of the tunnel of self-defeating behavior.
“This job is exactly what I went to Northeastern to do. I’ve been motivated by my own struggles and decided, I’m going to beat this—and then I’m going to help others beat it.”
With no experience in technology, Basimike landed a job with a Boston health technology company and launched a successful career at the intersection of two professions.
“I decided to take a chance on myself—to put myself outside my comfort zone and try something new.”
As a professional athlete who competed in five continents, Lowery’s flexible schedule made it possible for her to earn three degrees at Northeastern.
“I told Northeastern from the beginning that I have goals for physical therapy, but I also have very serious ambitions in skiing. Right from the start, the university was unbelievably accommodating. In May, I became a triple Husky.”
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