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Student group organizes CMDA chapter


Students at Indiana University School of Medicine-South Bend have organized a chapter of the Christian Medical and Dental Association (CMDA).

Students Holly VanDeman and Bethany Cooke are among students who petitioned the national CMDA organization for membership.

The South Bend chapter meets most Mondays at noon for a discussion about the intersection of Christian faith and medicine.

“We wanted to be enriched by something beyond the classroom,” Cooke said. “We wanted a space to talk about conflicts between Christianity and medicine.”

Sometimes, she said, the conflict is that studying demands so much there is little time for faith.

Justin Schwalbe, MD, of the South Bend Clinic helped the group get organized and its members recognized by the national chapter.

VanDeman and Cooke thanked supportive faculty, such as Joe Kotva and Joe Harmon, who regularly join the discussion. So far, attendance has ranged from eight to more than a dozen.