Oceanside CA— Health care students from MiraCosta College, Palomar College and Cal State San Marcos will learn firsthand the challenges experienced by critically ill patients when bestselling author and acclaimed speaker Marcus Engel – who was blinded and nearly killed by a drunken driver – delivers his inspirational message at the MiraCosta College Concert Hall on Thursday, September 15.
Engel, who went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Missouri State University and a master’s degree in narrative medicine from Columbia University, will provide participants a greater understanding and insight through first-person experience of how the care provided by medical professionals impacts not only the physiological but the many psychosocial and emotional complexities experienced by the critically ill.
“It is vital that health care professionals understand the impact of their actions on the patients they serve, and Mr. Engel’s experiences as told from the patient perspective have been eye-opening for tens of thousands of audience members at colleges, universities, nonprofits and medical centers over the years,” said Sue Simpson, a professor and assistant director of the Associate Degree in Nursing Program at MiraCosta College.
Engel’s memoir, “After This…An Inspirational Journey for All the Wrong Reasons,” chronicles his remarkable odyssey. Following the devastating collision after a Friday night hockey game, Engel underwent two years of rehabilitation, more than 300 hours of reconstructive facial surgery and adaption through a multitude of life changes to reclaim his life and remain true to himself.
Other books by Engel include “The Other End of the Stethoscope: 33 Insights for Excellent Patient Care,” “I’m Here: Compassionate Communication in Healthcare,” and “Everyday Inspiration.”
Health care professionals who have heard Engel speak have called his message vital, inspirational, and illuminating.
Engel also is the force behind the “I’m Here Movement,” a nonprofit that is trying to change the culture of health care. He described his motivation through his experience the night of his near-deadly collision.
“Jennifer was a 20-year-old patient care tech working in the BJH E.R. that night,” he wrote. “Throughout the night, my only real memory of the E.R. is Jennifer holding my hand and repeating, ‘I’m here, Marcus, I’m here…’ Those two words gave so much comfort in my most raw, vulnerable state. Just to know that I wasn’t alone in a world turned upside down, inside out and then pounded down with a sledgehammer. Jennifer was there. She was with me. She would not let go of my hand. I was not alone.”
The September 15 event is set to start at 4:30 p.m. MiraCosta College, 1 Barnard Drive in Oceanside. For further information, contact the MiraCosta College Nursing Program at 760.757.2121, ext. 6466, or Cheryl Broom at 760.795.6612.