MPH@GW Student Spotlight: Eighmey Zeeck Engle
Current Position: Intern with the Unit for Prevention of Blindness and Deafness at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland
MPH@GW caters to students in the United States and around the world. Through the online program, students from different time zones can earn a Master of Public Health and participate in live, face-to-face classes. Eighmey Zeeck Engle is one such student. She is currently interning at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. With a particular interest in global health policy, Eighmey is driven by a desire to help address gaps in the health care system, and she plans to use her MPH degree to land a full-time job working overseas. Eighmey recommends MPH@GW to students who are self-motivated and eager to make a difference in the world. Find out more in today’s interview.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I love to travel, meet new people and enjoy life with my three children.
Why and when did you decide to earn an MPH degree?
Based on my own personal experience, I have witnessed gaps in the health care system. I saw a specific need for improved competency, and — inspired by suggested reading from a friend who is a nurse midwife as well as my background in international studies — I sought to learn more about the impact of health care gaps experienced by women and children in the developing world.
Why did you choose the MPH@GW program?
As I mentioned earlier, I have three children, and finding someone to care for them so that I could pursue a degree on campus was becoming an issue. When I discovered that the MPH@GW program was being offered, I immediately jumped at the opportunity. Now I can attend class once my children are in bed and not have to worry about child care while earning my degree.
Do you have a desired focus area?
Yes, I would like to focus on global health policy.
What excites you most about the program?
I really enjoy the fact that our classes are incredibly small, only 12 to 15 students in a course section. I also appreciate that, for my cohort at least, I have been able to get to know most of my classmates and consider them to be friends both inside and outside of class.
What has been your favorite part of the experience in MPH@GW?
I would have to say that my favorite part has been creating a theoretical program in Social Behavioral Approaches to Health (PubH 6007) and then working with a partner to create a grant for an organization in Washington, D.C. That grant was actually submitted before I left for Geneva, and I am hoping it will be accepted so that the organization’s program can continue to help its youth violence prevention initiatives.
Have you confirmed your practicum experience? If so, tell us about it!
Yes, I am actually finishing my practicum at the moment. I am currently interning at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. I am with the Unit for Prevention of Blindness and Deafness and have been working with an amazing supervisor. We are performing secondary research on recreational hearing loss. I have also been able to sit in on meetings with country delegates and write concept notes for when my supervisor goes to meet with ministries of health in specific member states. It has been an amazing experience and helped me realize that I really do enjoy global health policy, despite the bureaucracy that one must deal with.
What are you hoping to accomplish upon graduation?
In a perfect world, I would like to work overseas in either a country office or regional office looking at health policy creation and implementation.