Kelsey Bumsted: A Broad Focus on Community Health
Keene State College offers students opportunities to learn on and off campus. For Kelsey Bumsted, a community health major, going off campus (way off campus) to countries like Nicaragua and Jamaica helped redirect her own path.
“Going into college, I thought I had my life all figured out,” recalls Kelsey. “I was going to graduate as a nutrition major and become a dietician. I was really surprised at how side-tracked I’ve gotten.”
As a freshman, Kelsey had the opportunity to help create the Fair Trade Club on campus. “Doing this has given me so many opportunities to be involved with students, professors, and staff from all over campus. I love the interconnectedness that you feel when talking to all different types of people,” she says.
Another unexpected, valuable opportunity for Kelsey was being involved with the International Service Trip to Jamaica. She says, “It gave me a totally eye-opening experience and shaped the direction of my major and interests.”
Kelsey’s KSC education and experiences are directly related to her future goals. For example, she explains, “I had the chance to work for a coconut oil company in Nicaragua. It has created an entirely new economy in a part of the country that barely has access to electricity. Plans are already in place to host educational presentations for members involved in the company. It’s nice to know that purchasing items like this are directly, positively impacting people who have never had access to a market before. It was incredibly uplifting to see the connection between economic opportunities and health.
“Something I hope to accomplish one day is to run my own business from abroad, taking into consideration the health and education of local people before selling and purchasing. After being a part of the Fair Trade community, I’ve realized that creating economic opportunity for developing areas of the world also gives people access to so many more important resources within health and education.”
Running a business from abroad was not in Kelsey’s original life plan, but as she says, “If I’ve learned anything within the last few years, it’s that plans always change. You just have to roll with it.”