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Serving Up Post-Grad Service

Class of 2018 Health and Human Sciences graduate Jackie Hutchinson is taking part in a year of post-graduate service with the Redeemer Ministry Corps in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Combining her passion for healthcare and desire to serve, Jackie is working as a nurse’s assistant and community health worker.

Jackie first learned of the opportunity at a post-graduate service dinner hosted by LMU’s Center for Service and Action – the bluff’s home base for volunteer and service work.

“I was really intrigued by the chance to work in the healthcare field and take part in a year of service,” the San Carlos, California native said. She plans to pursue a graduate degree in Physician Assistant Studies next year.

LMU currently ranks No. 8 for “Students Most Engaged in Community Service,” according to The Princeton Review, with Lions devoting over 200,000 hours per year to service efforts.

Drawn to the bluff for its Jesuit ideals and the vision of the mission, Jackie calls her LMU experience “transformative and rewarding,” due in no small part to the College of Science and Engineering’s invested faculty.

“One thing that is uniquely LMU are its small classes and the genuine interest professors take in their students,” she said, pointing out Environmental Science professor Dr. Cristina Tirado. “Dr. Tirado brought an exciting new perspective to the sciences, and I really appreciated how she combined current events with our coursework to give it relatable, modern context.”

LMU currently touts a student-to-faculty ratio of 10 to 1 and average class sizes of just 19.

She says a particular highlight of her college experience was spending an immersive semester abroad in Argentina, where she divided her time between classes and working with nuns at an after-school program in an impoverished neighborhood.

“The experience really helped me develop a broader worldview and learn a lot about myself during the process,” Jackie said, recommending all Lions journey abroad at some point to get a fresh perspective.

Thirty-six percent of LMU students give global imagination a spin by choosing to participate in a study abroad program, to a variety of locales spanning the globe.
Additionally, students can venture beyond the bluff on one of CSA’s Alternative Break trips, which aim to promote service and cultural exchange on the local, national and international level through hands-on, community-based learning. Jackie participated in two AB trips, including to Nicaragua, where the focus was on public health and diabetes prevention.

Outside of her rigorous coursework, Jackie was active in a number of campus pursuits, including as a member of the Sursum Corda service organization, as a student employee at the LMU Children’s Center and as President of the Women’s Club Soccer Team.

As for what advice Jackie has for future Lions?

“Take advantage of all the opportunities LMU has to offer,” she said. “There’s truly something for everyone on the bluff – not to mention a support system that has your back for all four years!”