WVU Nursing faculty discusses long-time support of MUSHROOM

An interprofessional group of volunteers for MUSHROOM gather weekly to support individuals experiencing homelessness in the community. 

WVU MUSHROOM, or Multidisciplinary Unsheltered Homeless Relief Outreach of Morgantown, is a student-run program through West Virginia University that aims to help the unhoused population and those in need of medical care.

Amber Ziese, a clinical education instructor at the WVU School of Nursing, has been working with MUSHROOM for about six years.

“Supporting this organization is so important to me because we can help link the unsheltered population back to the healthcare system and show them that there are people that genuinely care about them,” Ziese said. “Sometimes people do not want any supplies, but they just want to talk about the hardships in their life or how they got to where they currently are.”

MUSHROOM meets every other Wednesday in front of the Bartlett House to gather and distribute supplies. The student group then travels downtown to administer aid to those who request it.

The organization thrives on interprofessionalism, as students are accompanied by WVU faculty from various healthcare disciplines, including medicine, pharmacy, nursing, public health and occupational therapy. This approach allows students to see how each profession can uniquely contribute to patient care. The Monongalia Health Department sometimes accompanies MUSHROOM on rounds to assist with vaccines and naloxone distribution.

“Each student has a different viewpoint, so it is interesting to see the students collaborate on how best to provide holistic care,” Ziese said. “They also see firsthand how a patient’s socioeconomic status can impact their health and access to care.”

MUSHROOM plays a vital role in shaping future healthcare professionals. Through the program, students are able to gain a deeper understanding of the human side of healthcare, where genuine connections and compassion are as important as medical knowledge and skills.

Learn more or get involved with WVU MUSHROOM



CONTACT: Wendy Holdren
Director of Communications and Marketing
WVU School of Nursing
304-581-1772; wendy.holdren@hsc.wvu.edu