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Service Learning Programs

7 Elements

Project Description

About the National Organization

7 Elements is a service learning organization that currently operates in four different countries: the Dominican Republic, Belize, Peru, and Haiti. The group provides experiential learning through hands-on sustainable development projects and curriculums designed for each program that focus on international development, service learning, and human security issues. The organization focuses on the seven elements of human security: economic, food, health, environmental, personal, community, and political. Through local community partnerships, the group has also continued to improve access to these 7 Elements of human securities.

  • Contact:,,
  • Chairs: McKenzie Barber, Vitalis Osuji, Shae Jansen, Nick Ferguson, Kaylie Killian, Acacia Williams, Emily Sampson, Aaron Gilani, Sai Nelanuthala, Pete Hunter
  • Faculty Advisor: Antwione Haywood, Nicole Messmore

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Alternative Breaks

Project Overview

Alternative Spring Break — ENLACE

Medical, dental and graduate-level allied health and health professions student volunteers participate in this spring break service learning experience sponsored by the IU Department of Family Medicine’s ENLACE Project. Students are engaged in short-term global health infrastructure development, community health initiatives and clinical shadowing opportunities organized by Companion Community Development Alternatives (CoCoDA), a non-profit organization working in El Salvador for over 25 years and in partnership with the IU ENLACE Project since 2012.

This spring break service learning experience is the most recent expansion of the ENLACE Global Health Project in El Salvador, which currently includes the 4-week Summer Language and Cultural Immersion and the 4-week Global Health Elective in the municipality of Suchitoto, El Salvador.

While the ENLACE Global Health Project leadership hopes to offer the Alternative Spring Break Program in 2021, at this point there is no guarantee that will be possible. ENLACE leadership continues to work closely with our international partners to monitor the COVID-19 situation in El Salvador. Please reach out to the listed contact for updated information.

Sponsoring academic units at Indiana University

Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Family Medicine

Co-sponsoring U.S. institutions or organizations

Companion Community Development Alternatives (CoCoDA). A key component in the ENLACE Project expansion is the collaborative partnership with CoCoDA, the on-the-ground management organization responsible for delivering well-rounded and in-depth educational delegations. CoCoDA sets up key meetings, makes housing arrangements, conducts an in-depth orientation, provides interpretation/translation at all meetings, facilitates reflections spaces and accompanies the group everywhere they go in country.

Medical Service Learning Alternative Breaks

Under the direction of the Program Director for Community & Civic Engagement, medical service learning has a new alternative break program. Initiated in July 2019, IUSM hosted a trip for entering medical students around the Common Read “What the Eyes Don’t See” to Flint, Michigan. While the program is on hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the chairs and advisor are working to develop local service opportunities. Please contact the Alternative Break Co-Chairs if you would like to be involved in planning service opportunities.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana (BBBSCHI)

Project Description

Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) is a longitudinal one-on-one mentoring program. The Indiana University School of Medicine BBBS group seeks to promote student involvement and will get together with groups of mentoring pairs throughout the year.

Get Involved

Any medical student who can commit to at least one year of being in the Indianapolis area. You can sign up anytime throughout the year. Contact below to get started.

Mentoring occurs on your own time according to your schedule. When you are paired, you will organize a meeting with the parents of your little brother / sister.

BBBS is at least a one-year commitment with a requirement to meet at least twice per month with your little brother or sister. The IU School of Medicine BBBS group will seek to organize a couple events per year to get pairs together.

IUSM Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis Partnership Program (I-BIPP)

Project Description

The purpose of the Boys and Girls Club of America is “to enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.” I-BIPP, or the IU School of Medicine Boys and Girls Club of Indianapolis Partnership Program, works with children and adolescents at the local Boys and Girls Clubs to provide positive role models and promote health education.

We plan on having 1-2 events per semester that focus on aspects of preventative medicine and general wellness. In the past, we’ve planned health fairs with multiple SIGs, blood drives, Thanksgiving meals, helmet drives, and much more!

Commitment is minimal, but this is a great and easy way to help local kids and get involved with philanthropy! We need lots of participants, who will only have a 2-3 hour commitment 1-2 times per semester, adding up to around 10 hours total for the year. It’s also a fun way to buff your CV!

For more information, contact the group email or one of the co-chairs below!

Community Immersion Project

Project Description

The Community Immersion Project (CIP) connects new students to their community and is a required part of the orientation experience. Traditionally held in Indianapolis for all new students, it includes education around social determinants of health and working with a local nonprofit.

Correctional Medicine Student Outreach Project

Project Description


All physicians, in their careers, will interact with individuals who have had experience with the criminal justice system, or have been formerly incarcerated.  Other medical schools have opportunity for either third and fourth year clinical rotations in correctional facilities, or have student organizations that facilitate service-oriented clinical opportunities within correctional facilities and host events that focus on the broader socioeconomic and political context and forms of structural and cultural violence that have contributed to the state of mass incarceration in the US. Further, incarcerated populations are disproportionately affected by certain disease states and health conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and hypertension. Opportunity to participate in medical care within correctional facilities, while concurrently engaging in discussions about the institutions that have contributed to disproportionate incarceration of certain populations, and mass incarceration as a whole, would be a great learning experience for medical students, cultivating empathetic, socially-engaged, and passionate young physicians and truth-seekers. Additionally, medical students have the potential to make a positive impact in the lives of the patients with whom they will interact. 

Organizational Action and Events

This project, in coordination with the Chief Medical Officer of the Indiana Department of Corrections (IDOC), Dr. Kristen Dauss, will allow medical students to enter into correctional facilities across the state, and learn from correctional facility physicians how to best care for incarcerated populations, practice history and physical exam skills, and learn about the life stories and experiences of the patients in that facility. Students will be allowed to sign up for shifts within the facility. The IDOC will be able to accommodate learners from across the state, as correctional facilities are also spread across the state. 

We will host various panel discussions with both correctional medicine physicians, representatives from community organizations that work with these populations, as well as formerly incarcerated individuals, to discuss their experiences with the criminal justice system, with health care providers while incarcerated and after incarceration, and their life experiences. We would like to host journal/book clubs, and screen documentaries related to the subjects as well. 

Crispus Attucks

Project Description

The Crispus Attucks Student Interest Group (CASIG) provides weekly lessons, tutoring, and mentorship to middle and high school students at Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet School with the mission of getting kids interested in science and medicine.

Getting Involved

All medical students are welcome and encouraged to participate! The time commitment can be once a week, every other week, or even a couple days a semester! Whatever works best for you! The kids really appreciate your time and friendship and look forward to working with you whenever you are available!

School lessons: TBD
Tutoring and mentoring: TBD


Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet High School
1140 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. Indianapolis, IN, 46201

  • Contact:
  • Chairs: Jonathan Class, Shelby Lanie
  • Faculty Advisor: Jenny Baenzier

Disability Advocacy Service Learning Group (DASL)

Project Description

The Disability Advocacy Service Learning group serves children and adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities. Medical students collaborate with community agencies such as the Joseph Maley Foundation and Special Olympics among others to engage and advocate for community members through camps, activities, and volunteerism.

By participating, students will:

  1. Advocate for children and adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities
  2. Volunteer with various organizations throughout the year
  3. Connect with community resources that patients may use
  4. Learn about caring for and talking to people with disabilities
  5. Enhance their understanding of the humanism and capabilities of people with disabilities

Eskenazi Food Distribution

Project Description

Assist Eskenazi Health with distributing food to individuals in need.
Every Monday, 3:30 pm to 6:15 pm, Eskenazi Health main campus.
Sign up:

Fostering Awareness of the Community by Engaging Students (FACES)

Project Description

  • Students receive safe opportunities to work with adults experiencing homelessness
  • Students & homeless adults create mutual learning experience
  • Students gain a better understanding of health-related needs of vulnerable populations
    • Homeless adults gain communication tools
    • Despite poor health outcomes and a significant need for primary healthcare services, adults experiencing homelessness often do not seek or receive the medical care they need.
    • Barriers prevent adults experiencing homelessness from utilizing primary healthcare/ receiving quality care,
      • Lack of financial resources
      • No insurance
      • Absence of transportation
      • Competing priorities
      • Provider distrust
    • Feelings of unwelcomeness
    • FACES developed in response to this issue and the demand for improved health service utilization

  • Contact:,,,
  • Chairs: Adrian Huffard, Sandi Jones, Taylor Munsch, Luke Brennan
  • Faculty Advisor: Bree Weaver

Habitat for Humanity

Project Description

Volunteer with local Habitat for Humanity chapters to help provide decent, affordable homes and alleviate substandard housing.

Activities include volunteering on a build site – Instant Gratification! You can see your contribution to a family’s new home. Check out volunteer opportunities here ( No experience is needed. If you are interested in Surgery, this is also a GREAT way to improve your dexterity and eye-hand coordination.


Project Description

M4M at IU School of Medicine

Medals4Mettle at IU School of Medicine will partner with Riley Hospital for Children to involve students with Child Life Services. Students will apply online to be a Riley volunteer, and attend a volunteer orientation. Students will commit a maximum of 20 hours per semester to volunteering. Riley Hospital regularly has Special Events, where community groups have an opportunity to come interact with Riley children. It will be at these events that students will have the opportunity to gift medals to children.

Students will spend the academic year training to participate in an end-of-the-semester marathon or half-marathon. The student will run on behalf of all of the children of Riley. After the race, students will attend a Riley Hospital Special Event organized by Medals4Mettle to personally gift their medal to a child.

Community/Organizational Partnership

M4M at IU School of Medicine is lucky to have Dr. Steve Isenberg, the Founder and CEO of M4M, as a faculty advisor. We will work closely with Dr. Isenberg and Sally Powell, the Indianapolis M4M Chapter Coordinator, to ensure that M4M at IU School of Medicine has a close relationship with the parent organization. Melissa Sexton, the Riley Hospital Child Life

Special Events coordinator, has offered to act as a liaison between M4M at IU School of Medicine and Riley. Blake Boldon, the executive director of the Monumental Marathon, has pledged to advertise the efforts of an M4M at IU School of Medicine group, and to consider offering a discount for M4M students. Alissa Bishel and Sarah Parrish, the co-leaders of the IU School of Medicine Running Club, have offered to lend their support to any M4M activities. And of course, Riley Hospital already has a warm relationship with M4M.

Would you like more information on the IU School of Medicine Medals4Mettle Service Learning group?

  • Contact: medals@iupui,edu,
  • Chairs: Kayla Delaney, Alli Jostes
  • Faculty Advisor: Steve Isenberg


Medical Spanish

Project Description

Medical Spanish is a group interested in improving IU medical students’ Spanish-speaking skills and their relationships with and interests in the Spanish-speaking community.

What we do:

  • Practice your medical Spanish with lunch + dinner talks with didactics, conversation practice, and delicious food
  • Participate in a summer Spanish course taught by faculty
  • Serve as Spanish language interpreters for IUSM Community Outreach


  • Represent IUSM at community events
  • Global Health: ENLACE Project – El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras


  • Develop/polish Spanish-speaking skills in clinical setting
  • Enhance clinical training
  • Understand healthcare disparities in the Latino community
  • Mentorship


  • Wellness on Wheels Bus (Center of Excellence for Women’s Health)
  • Westside Health Fair (8/3/19)
  • Jornada de Salud (Spring)
  • Fiesta Indianapolis (September)
  • IUSM Student Outreach Clinic


Chairs: Emily Hentz, Sarah Olson, Maddie Evans, Alexandra Roper, Kevin Ni, Kayla Harpold

Faculty Advisor: Ruben Hernandez

Rock for Riley

Project Overview

Rock for Riley is a student-run philanthropy group that consists of many of the IU medical professional schools in Indianapolis. Several Indiana University medical students founded Rock for Riley in 2004 and organized our first show featuring Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe at the Vogue Theatre. The first show raised nearly $25,000 for Riley Hospital in Indianapolis. Since then, we have had bands such as Wilco, My Morning Jacket, Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s, and The Avett brothers play at our shows and have raised over $800,000 for the hospital. We are so excited to work together during this year of financial uncertainty and increased demand for accessible healthcare to support Riley Hospital for Children in their areas of greatest need. 

This year we will be hosting a concert in the fall and 5k in the spring, either virtually or physically. We would love for you to join us by either participating in these events or becoming a part of our committee! Our committee is dedicated to improving children’s health in Indiana and beyond, and we thank you for joining us to make this mission possible.

Spring House Calls

Project Overview
Spring House Calls (SHC) is the largest and oldest service-learning project of the Indiana University School of Medicine Office of Medical Service-Learning . Now in its 21st year (with one cancellation due to COVID-19), SHC is a service project dedicated to providing home and lawn maintenance for elderly and disabled, minority homeowners in 2 inner-city neighborhoods to the east and west of the IU campus. Each spring, the SHC group plants flowers, cuts grass, removes weeds, washes windows, and performs maintenance on the homes.

SHC is coordinated, managed, and operated by medical students with guidance and support from the Service Learning Coalition.

Team Leader – approximate time commitment 6 hours
Your job is to lead a team of volunteers. A pre-event house visit is encouraged, but this should be brief; if a visit is not possible, a confirmation phone call will suffice. Also, a meeting or two will take place before the actual day of service to confirm volunteers and home visits, as well as provide demographic information on the neighbors we will be serving and working with. There may or may not be a wrap-up meeting. All told, this will amount to approximately 2 hours of time outside of the 4 hour SHC event. Leaders are welcome to recruit from outside the medical school to fill their teams with family, friends, etc.

Day-of Volunteer – approximate time commitment: 4 hours
Your job is simple. You show up the day of the event to the Christamore House, learn which team you’ve been assigned to, meet with your team, load up your supplies, then head to your house.

Typical schedule on the day of the event:
• 8:30 AM – Check in at the Christamore House
• 9:00-12:30 PM – Yard maintenance and landscaping at assigned home
• 12:30-1:30 PM – Post-event lunch at the Christamore House (for volunteers and homeowners)
Remember, teams do not need to be composed of just IU School of Medicine students; other IUPUI and IU graduate students, friends, family, and anyone else are allowed and encouraged to participate! Also, teams are a great way for SIGs to get involved with service-learning at IU School of Medicine.
• Contact:,
• Chairs: Honglin Xiao, Emily Hentz, Alberto Torres
• Faculty Advisor: Javier Sevilla

Student Outreach Clinic

Project Overview

The Student Outreach Clinic is a student initiative to deliver medical care to the underserved. There are now three Student Outreach Clinics throughout IU School of Medicine.

Indianapolis — IU Student Outreach Clinic

  • 2020 Chair: Matt Hollowell
  • 2020 Vice Chair: Paige Schultheis
  • Faculty Advisor: Javier Sevilla
  • Join the listserv: Go to and log-in with your IU credentials. Add “IU-soc-l” to sign up for clinic/volunteer updates. Contact Joseph Wolf, Volunteers Chair for more information (

South Bend — Navari Student Outreach Clinic

  • 2020 Chair: Ian Oeschle
  • 2020 Vice Chair: Mahera Husain
  • Faculty Advisor: Joseph Cerbin
  • Contact: 574-302-6235

Terre Haute — Mollie R. Wheat Memorial Clinic

  • 2020 Chair: Shan Antony
  • 2020 Vice Chair of Operations: Emma Eckrote
  • 2020 Vice Chair of Personnel: Kirsten Lewis
  • Faculty Advisor: Peter Duong

Students for the Prevention of Kidney Disease (SPKD)

Project Overview

Students involved with SPKD will be able to volunteer with outreach programs and screening events for underserved patients through the National Kidney Foundation and will have the opportunity to work with Nephrology mentors early on in their medical careers.
SPKD’s aim is to serve the underserved areas of Indianapolis, Muncie, Terre Haute, South Bend, Bloomington, Evansville, Fort Wayne, West Lafayette, and Gary. Our goal is to spread awareness and prevent serious health issues that are frequently caused or exacerbated by a lack of health literacy or access to primary care.
A program like SPKD helps train students to recognize the social barriers to healthcare in the community, bringing them one step closer to becoming physicians to treat a whole patient rather than just a disease.

  • Contact:
  • Chairs: Albert Liu, JD Damrath, Sarah Lipp
  • Faculty Advisor: Ayman Hallab, Timothy Sutton, Melissa Anderson, Richard Hellman

Westside Health Fair – CANCELED FOR 2020-2021 DUE TO COVID-19

Project Description

Westside Health Fair partnership with Eskenazi Health, and each year we have over 300 community members take part.

The Westside Health Fair is one of the largest service projects at the IU School of Medicine, involving dozens of medical students, who provide free health care screenings and education to residents on Indianapolis’ near west side. The Westside Health Fair takes place each October and is a fantastic opportunity for Student Interest Groups to provide health education and screenings germane to group’s interest.

Additional features of the fair include: free flu shots, raffle prizes, and a town hall meeting.

Are you passionate about something you don’t see?

  • Email with any service project ideas you may have. If you don’t know where to start, we can help you!
  • Basic requirements:
    • Service-learning
    • Community partner

Proposed budget