Helping Haiti Through a Fellowship

Jul 27, 2011

The devastating earthquake that ruptured in Haiti in January 2010 is far off the media radar, yet Haiti still has a long road to recovery. Many hope to rebuild Haiti so that it can one day provide better education, infrastructure and health services for its citizens than ever before.

Some extraordinary people took the opportunity to make a real difference in Haiti through a fellowship. Jay Grahm won an AAAS Science & Technology Fellowship and went to Haiti to help build hand washing stations and provide other sanitation needs for growing camps full of displaced people.

This year Anand Habib, a senior from Houston, Texas studying biology at Stanford, won a Medical Missionaries Post-Baccalaureate Fellowship to spend a year serving at the St. Joseph Clinic in Thomassique, Haiti. Anand plans to become an infectious disease doctor.

There are also Haitians who have used fellowships to train abroad and bring skills and expertise back to Haiti. Pierre Fouché, a Fulbright Fellow from Haiti, studied at the University of Buffalo to learn more about building earthquake-proof structures.  He went back to Haiti to train other engineers and architects working in the rebuilding effort.

Cynthia Robinson, director of the AAAS S&T Fellowships, said the efforts of those working in Haiti “are indicative of the skills that Fellows can offer by applying their knowledge in real-world situations to address challenges and bring about positive change.”