Shyla Prince part of Ivy Tech group that aided flood victims in West Virginia


A Switzerland County woman joined other Ivy Tech Community College medical assisting and nursing students and faculty; as well as hundreds of other volunteers this fall to provide basic medical, vision, and dental care at a free clinic in a flood-stricken West Virginia community.

Shyla Prince, a graduate of Switzerland County High School, was one of 14 students and three faculty members who partnered with Remote Area Medical in October to see 456 patients and aid in administering $213,016 in free services to the people of Elkview, West Virginia. The community was devastated by widespread, destructive flooding in June.

“This volunteer opportunity provided our students with an excellent service-learning project that offered a unique hands-on experience providing care to those who greatly need it,” said Monica Bolton, Medical Assisting and Healthcare Specialist Program Chair. “Our students are dedicated to preparing themselves for healthcare-related careers and life-long community service. This volunteer opportunity was very integral to meeting these goals. The students gained a better understanding of diversity and meaningful healthcare. These students worked as a team to make a visible difference in people’s lives and that is what we do here at Ivy Tech, change lives.”

The other Ivy Tech students who were a part of the group that Prince was a part of included: Emily Buckhave, Rebekah Davidson, Kari Hakins, Russina Moore, Breanna Cannon, Brandy Branham, Amber Hunter, Kerri Cole, Sara Breitenstein, Elizabeth Couch, Heather Gaines, Jodi Littlefield, and Samantha Weiler. They were joined by Bolton along with Cindy Lauber and Dr. Shelly Eisert, both associate professors of Nursing.

The Ivy Tech volunteers assisted in examining hundreds of patients for vision, dental and general medical needs. They also helped set up and tear down the clinic, which included mobile units set up for dental hygiene, women’s health, and making eye glasses on site.

Remote Area Medical is a Tennessee-based nonprofit organization that delivers basic medical aid to people in the world’s inaccessible regions by offering medical care through mobile clinics in underserved, isolated, or impoverished communities.