CGI U 2013 at Washington University in St. Louis

Breaking Behaviors

Paul George, student in the School of Medicine

School of  Medicine student Paul George spent three years in rural Costa Rica as a medical translator, elementary school teacher and field director of a non-governmental organization (NGO) before attending medical school.

While in Costa Rica, he noticed that problematic health-care practices — such as drinking coconut milk to prevent pregnancy and feeding babies bottles containing coffee and sugar — are handed down from generation to generation.  He proposes to develop a curriculum that addresses such practices and their negative consequences.

His focus is a small area — La Javilla — since he continues to have strong ties there. But he also wants to share his plan with volunteers in other villages who want to institute projects but don’t know where to start. George is confident he can train volunteers to bring helpful health-care information to villages throughout Costa Rica and then to other Latin American countries.