The Philippines has played an influential role in the life of Melissa Fischer, Avondale Alumni Association’s Young Alumnus of the Year for 2013. It’s the birthplace of her mother, who raised Melissa and her brother after the death of their father, and the country to which Melissa wishes to return for mission service.
In 2007, the final year of her study at Avondale College of Higher Education, Melissa took 10 of her nursing classmates to an orphanage in Dumaguete, the capital of Negros Oriental. They cared for 30 children, ran a children’s club and presented health talks in the beachside town of Basay. Melissa returned to the Philippines with her family for four months in 2010, helping run children’s clubs and health programs. She also helped with medical emergencies—a boy with a broken arm, a mother whose contractions began well before she could make it to hospital and the death of a two-month-old baby.
Melissa is one of the thousands of graduates who leave Avondale with “a greater vision of world needs.” They do because an Avondale education fosters a Christian learning community founded on research-based higher education that prepares students for service. We call this the Avondale experience, an experience the Avondale Alumni Association
seeks to maintain and strengthen.