Lisa and Chris are students from Norway in an 8 weeks exchange program between Norway and Palestine to learn more about medical-surgical nursing. Lisa is 26 years old and 164 cm tall woman, she suffers from the urge to travel, and the desire to learn to know new cultures. The findings are restlessness, fluctuating fever and tachycardia also called excitement in non-medical circles. Chris is a 32 year old and 190 cm tall man, he suffers from recurring depression because of cold weather and darkness back home in Norway and the urge to travel. The symptoms are pale skin, abdominal discomfort and high levels of the adrenal stress hormone cortisol.
The students have no past health history, medications or surgeries. Except for Chris' tonsillectomy in 1990 and stenting a varicocele in 2014.
Here comes our present subjective data for our stay in Palestine and with Bethlehem University. We both chose Palestine because of the countries history, politics and religious sites. Palestine has been talked about since we were kids, in school, in the news and around the dinner table. When we had the chance to live and work with the Palestinians for 8 weeks it was a no-brainer for us both, we HAD to go! And now 8 weeks later we have just finished our clinical practice. For nursing objectives we have learned a lot of theory, seen many surgeries and had the opportunity to visit emergency rooms, intensive care unit, geriatric ward and operating rooms in four different hospitals in Jerusalem and Bethlehem. We have met many engaged doctors and nurses who works long shifts to give the Palestinians in Jerusalem and West Bank the care and treatment they deserve. As we thought before leaving Oslo for Bethlehem, the stay would be more of a cultural travel then a medical-surgical one. The most important lesson was to learn to know the people of Palestine and their culture. We love the food, kindness, curiosity and engagement the Palestinians we met possess. And last but not least the hope the Palestinians have for a better tomorrow for the growing young population in an occupied West Bank and East-Jerusalem.
We recommend other nursing students from all around the globe to exchange in Palestine. As mentioned you will learn plenty of nursing objectives and meet tons of locals engaging in your internship. Be prepared to talk loud, learn Arabic phrases, and eat many good shawarmas. Visit beautiful ancient and holy sites and at the same time learn more about todays Palestine in Bethlehem and Jerusalem. We both had a wonderful stay, and hope to come back one day, Insha'Allah!
Best regards, Chris & Lisa