BA fromTufts University (2012), MSMP Case Western Reserve University (2014), MPH George Washington University (2020), attending Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, Class of 2027
I was born in Ghana, West Africa, but my family and I immigrated to the United States in 1996 when I was six years old. We lived in Annapolis, Maryland, and as a child I was determined to become a veterinarian after watching Dr. Dolittle. During a family trip back to our native country in 2007, however, I became acquainted with healthcare disparities and decided to pursue a career in medicine. As an anthropology major at Tufts University, I endeavored to broaden my understanding of health in a global context and successfully conducted ethnographic research on natal care in the Eastern Region of Ghana. During this time, I also gained extensive clinical experiences at the Hawa Memorial Saviour Hospital in my mother’s hometown of Osiem. After graduation, I returned to Ghana with a field research team to conduct public health research on urogenital schistosomiasis.
While my undergraduate career provided me with valuable experiences, I struggled in my pre-medical courses and knew that I needed to strengthen my science foundation. Moreover, I wanted to be confident that I could handle the rigor of a medical school education. I was attracted to the MSMP program not only because of its curriculum but also because of the many opportunities available through the Case Western Reserve University education and health systems. Alongside coursework, I spent a year conducting research on the effects of neonatal hyperoxia exposure on the development of airway hyperreactivity with Dr. Richard Martin at Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital. All the while, I continued my love of music by performing as a violinist with the Case/University Circle Symphony Orchestra. The MSMP program helped me to translate theoretical knowledge and apply laboratory work to human health and disease, in addition to providing me with the skills necessary to succeed in medical school.
Since graduating from the MSMP program in 2014, many things have happened that also contributed to my personal and professional development. A sudden illness with anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis prevented me from matriculating to medical school in 2015 and led to several years of therapy and recovery. Nevertheless, it made me even more appreciative of the medical field and of the tireless efforts made by my physicians and the entire medical team to provide me with the best possible care, especially when there was no clear answer. In 2020, I graduated with my Master of Public Health degree from the George Washington University and followed this with a postbaccalaureate research fellowship at the Vaccine Research Center of the National Institutes of Health, which I completed in 2022. Eight years after graduating from the MSMP program, I am happy to say that I have begun my medical training at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. I am thankful to God for bringing me thus far, and for the great mentors, instructors, and friends that I made along the way. You were all an integral part of my getting to this part of the journey!