September 17, 2007
Stephanie Van Dyke ’99,
co-founder of the Engeye Health Clinic in Uganda
has been named a “Daily Point of Light” by the Points of Light Foundation and
Volunteer Center National Network, a nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C.
currently a medical student at Albany Medical College
in Albany, New York, is also recipient of the 2007 Pete Reid Award
for Young Alumni. The Whitman Alumni Association presents this award each year to
someone whose youthful exuberance is demonstrated daily toward his or her
career, community, and Whitman
College as exemplified by
Pete Reid '49 in his service to the College.
Van Dyke, a
psychology major, spent the year after graduation traveling and volunteering
around the world. Her first stop was in Uganda,
where she taught English to the children of Katooke Village,
but she soon discovered that what they really needed was basic medical
care. This epiphany inspired her to
choose a career in medicine with the ultimate goal of building sustainable
medical clinics in Uganda
and other underserved areas around the world.
of Van Dyke’s clinics, the Engeye Health Clinic in Uganda, was constructed last summer
by a group of volunteers that included Van Dyke and her parents. Funding came
from contributions and from a small inheritance she received from her
grandmother. A laboratory is currently being constructed next to the clinic.
2007, Van Dyke and a small group of medical students from Albany Medical
College along with two
doctors and a nurse traveled to the medical center where they provided medical
care to the villagers. The next medical mission is scheduled for November 2007.
In the mean time, local doctors and nurses will help the villagers and provide
them with healthcare.
Point of Light Award honors individuals and volunteer groups for their
commitment to connect Americans through service to help meet critical needs in
their communities. It focuses on the goals for children and youth set by the
President’s Summit for America’s Future.
Parish, Whitman College News Service, (509) 527-5156