Approximately 240 students took up everything from shovels to plates of food as they volunteered with various community organizations and their facilities last month as part of the McGovern Medical School’s annual Day of Service.

Medical students took to the streets of Houston with about 14 other organizations Aug. 10, with about 67 students volunteering to assist with setting up the 41st Annual Henry Strobel Retreat in Navasota, TX.  Among some of the organizations students helped with the most included the Star of Hope’s Women and Family Emergency Center (with 12 students), Houston Food Bank’s Keegan Kitchen (with 15 students), The Beacon and Plant it Forward. Medical students spent the day assisting with senior care, environmental restoration, food distribution and preparation,

At the McGovern Centennial Gardens in Hermann Park, students got their hands dirty, providing landscaping for many of the plants and other fixtures. Medical student Christopher Bertini said he was happy to lend his help to the 20 year old park.

“We’re making sure the park looks good for the community because we’re trying to give back as medical students and that’s what it’s all about,” Bertini said. “We’re just happy to be here.”

Joe Brewer, a second-year medical student, also spoke of the importance of giving back to the same community that gave him and other students the opportunities to succeed at McGovern Medical School.

“These are our patients and this is our city and the beautiful place that we’re going to be working at as future physicians,” Brewer said. “Just being able to give back to the community and immerse ourselves in it for a day is what the McGovern Day of Service allows us to do.”