Day three spent at Austral was the most eventful and entertaining day yet. We started the day by touring the Medical Center part of Austral. We had the opportunity to visit the emergency area, the ICU, the pediatric floor, and different nursing stations throughout the hospital. It was very interesting to talk to our nurse tour guides and learn how their hospital functions. One of the things I found most interesting was when we went into the nursing medicine station and they spoke to us about how they personally prepare the medicine and only have one pharmacist for the whole hospital. Additionally, as somebody who is very involved in children’s hospital fundraising, it was interesting to hear about how much they prioritize adult care over pediatric care. Austral’s mission statement includes “the pursuit of truth and a culture of life.” A pursuit of truth was widely demonstrated through the transparency the nurses gave us throughout our tour. They showed us everything including some systems that might be semi-private. They also were not afraid to answer questions about some of the faults of their hospital and the Argentinian healthcare system due to problems like funding and politics. Additionally, some of the other parts of our Austral trip such as our trip to the research lab demonstrates that they are willing to let people in to learn about them as a research hospital. We saw the culture of life in the staff at the hospital. They were all very happy and engaged both while working and talking about their jobs. We could tell that they really enjoy their jobs even though they can be very challenging. This demonstrates their culture of life because they are people that are dedicated to salvaging life and staying optimistic no matter how difficult their jobs may be or how critical of a condition their patients face.
After our hospital and laboratory tour, we toured Austral’s MBA school. First, we went into a really cool area called an innovation station which featured different technologies and lacked some walls to get people to think outside of the box. After that, we were able to shadow an MBA level class similar to Operations Management at Pitt where the students were doing a Lego Simulation that pertained to Supply Chain. I found this simulation very interesting because I had already learned some of the content in Managing in Complex Environments and Quantitative Methods this past year. Also, the group I was watching over was very nice and spoke English for us so we could understand the simulation. Then, we ate empanadas for lunch and had a “mixer” with some of the undergrad Austral students. There, we were able to talk to the students about what it’s like to live in Argentina and go to Austral. We also made posters for a local community center. We finished the day with a joint lecture with the Austral students from Dr. Martsolf.
Highlight of the Day: Meeting the Austral Students! They were all very nice and good at speaking English. They gave us suggestions about places to go around the city and we may even meet up with them if we get time this weekend!