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Western University of Health Sciences has a message of solidarity for Paris: “Je suis Paris.” I am Paris.

The College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific’s Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine/Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (NMM/OMM) Department created a video message to express love and support to their colleagues in Paris, France.

NMM/OMM faculty and fellows have traveled to Paris to teach students at Ecole Superieure d’Osteopathie-Paris. The video is a response to the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks on Paris that killed more than 100 people and injured hundreds more.

Fifth-year Fellows Natalie Hollick and Nirvi Shah gave the following message on the video:

“A devastating tragedy occurred in Paris, and its effects were felt here in Pomona. As soon as we heard the news, our thoughts and prayers were with you all. Together we stand strong as health care professionals, and also as human beings, against the terrible violence that has struck France. Our sincerest condolences go out to your city, country, and your people. Please know that you have our full support as we continue to pray for you and your loved ones’ safety. I am Paris. Je suis Paris.”

Faculty from COMP and Ecole Superieure d’Osteopathie-Paris have known each other and worked together for decades, said COMP Senior Consultant and Professor Ray Hruby, DO, MS, FAAO. His first trip to Paris was in 1980, and he has returned regularly to teach at the university.

Hollick and Shah visited the Paris osteopathic university in March 2015. They taught a weeklong course on myofascial release to sixth-year graduating students.

“It’s a beautiful city, full of architecture, warmth, food and culture,” Shah said. “Students were lovely. They loved our American input to the field of osteopathic medicine.”

“It was a nice cross-cultural, cross-country connection with students who were very similar to us in what we’re passionate about,” Hollick said.

Faculty from the College of Optometry and WesternU staff also appear in the video.

“I think it’s important to establish a connection and keep a connection with everyone you’ve interacted with,” Shah said. “Our school strives to teach humanism, and this is one of the greatest acts of humanism.”

“These are people we know and made connections with. It’s more personal,” Hollick said. “We want to show we care and they have our support. Just because we’re far apart geographically, we’re not far apart emotionally.”