- Founding Faculty Co-LeadAndrew B. Kaufman World Medicine PathwaySchool of MedicineAssistant Professor, PediatricsDepartment of PediatricsCleveland Clinic Lerner College of MedicineSchool of MedicineFaculty Co-DirectorPeru Health Outreach ProjectSchool of Medicine
Aarohi Mahableshwarkar - UP M1
Undergraduate: University of Southern California (2020)
About me: I majored in international relations as an undergraduate, and at the intersection of international relations and health grew my passion for global health. I found myself fascinated by the elucidatory power of politics, history, culture, and economics in understanding and solving health inequities around the globe. This passion was further cultivated through international volunteer experiences as well as through research projects I conducted on malnutrition in India, food insecurity and climate change in the Arctic, and opioid addiction in the United States, India, and Greece. As a physician, I intend to utilize my global health knowledge and medical expertise to mitigate health inequities through medical practice, capacity building, and policy advocacy.
Alex Eishingdrelo - UP M1
Undergraduate: Boston College (2020)
About me: As an undergraduate, I served as a translator for a global health initiative that seeks to improve childbirth outcomes in China. While serving patients in the country my parents were born in was rewarding, I was also frustrated by the prevalence of health misconceptions. Many expecting mothers believed that getting a labor epidural would harm them and their babies. Correcting inaccurate health beliefs in the United States and throughout the world is undoubtedly no easy task. It requires addressing the root causes of these misconceptions -- including poverty, a lack of educational opportunities, discrimination, and historical events. I plan to be a globally engaged physician and work towards reducing inequities in health education in my career.
Danielle Herman - UP M1
Undergraduate: Princeton University (2018)
About me: I developed my interest in global health through my experience as a leader of a global health student organization in college. One of the main philosophies of our group was to respect the autonomy of our partner grassroots organization. We acknowledged that our partners had the greatest awareness of the challenges facing their community as well as the resources available to address them. A group of students visited our partner clinic in Kapeeka, Uganda each year for annual goal setting for the partnership. Together with our partner, we were able to identify the need for a vaccine refrigerator and portable ultrasound machine and to raise the necessary funds to improve community health and maternal and fetal health with these machines. I am passionate about women's health and hope to address inequities in maternal/fetal outcomes during my career.
Deb Gakpo - UP M1
Undergraduate: Hamilton College (2019)
About me: I immigrated from Ghana when I was young and for as long as I can remember, my family told me time and time again about the poor healthcare system back home. It wasn't until 2017, during an internship in Ho, Ghana that I was able to clearly see for myself what I had been told all my life. From that experience I knew I wanted to do something to help. I am particularly interested in neonatal health and working to improve health outcomes in Ghana and similar countries. I look forward to learning how to work towards this goal with my classmates during my time in the pathway!
Undergraduate: Case Western Reserve University (2020)
Graduate: University of Haifa (2021)
About me: At the University of Haifa in Israel, I pursued my Master of Public Health degree. Through the program's core curriculum and timing coinciding with the COVID-19 pandemic, I learned how Israel's healthcare system can function seamlessly for some but can oftentimes pose structural barriers for minority groups. I was fortunate to bear witness to and benefit from Israel's initial success in handling the COVID-19 pandemic and distributing COVID-19 vaccinations; however, I now see that even some of the best health systems can perpetuate inequity. Whether it is regarding equitable vaccine distribution, equitable distribution of healthcare access, or a lack of LGBT centered healthcare, improving healthcare systems is one way to foster justice in society.
Jenny Kim - UP M1
Undergraduate: The Ohio State University (2018)
About me: I started to grapple with the concept of global citizenship from an early age through the lens of my own immigrant experience; through my participation in the WMP, I look forward to clarifying what this means for me as a future physician. During my undergraduate years, this exploration of global citizenship led me to research racial disparities in breast cancer from a basic science perspective, to study intersectional feminism in my courses, and to start a grassroots global gender equity organization. After graduation, I worked mostly with Central American immigrant patients at the largest FQHC in Washington, DC, where I learned the importance of culturally competent health care and the dire need for improvement in our current system. I hope to continue exploring this fluid concept of global citizenship in the WMP and in my career, as I merge my passion for migrant health and healthcare for women and gender minorities through cross-cultural research and advocacy.
Jonathan Lee - UP M1
Undergraduate: Case Western Reserve University (2020)
About me: In 2017, I had the privilege of volunteering at an orphanage in Mexico as a medical intern. Every year that I returned, I became more passionate about developing the on-campus clinic and providing healthcare to children who have experienced severe sexual assault or abandonment. I witnessed how access to healthcare services could create a sense of trust and positivity for those who felt very vulnerable and distant. My long-term goals are to continue volunteering at this orphanage and expanding my passion to other international institutions. I am excited to work with the students and mentors in the World Medicine Pathway to achieve these goals and create long-lasting connections surrounding global health.
Pranav Kumar - UP M1
Undergraduate: Middlebury College (2020)
About me: Some of my most formative childhood experiences were my family's frequent visits to the South Indian neighborhoods where my parents grew up. The persisting effects of caste-based discrimination were apparent, even from a very young age. As I began college, I developed an interest in global health when reconciling a passion for medical care and a desire to support historically marginalized communities. I look forward to learning from my peers and mentors in the WMP while striving to counteract health inequities in a sustainable, empowering manner.
Alyssa Edwards - UP M2
Undergraduate: Case Western Reserve University (2020)
Graduate: Case Western Reserve University (2020)
About me: At CWRU, I pursued my Master of Public Health degree after spending time in Ghana in 2018 working at Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research and Korle Bu Teaching Hospital. I was funded through the National Institute of Health and Morehouse School of Medicine where I researched molecular and genetic biomarkers associated with resistance to malaria in sickle cell trait to find malaria protection therapies. While I enjoyed learning more about infectious disease, I found myself interested in the systematic differences between healthcare in different countries. The WMP will allow me to continue to pursue my passions in health inequities, disease prevention, and health education locally and abroad as a future physician.
Chang Yoon Doh - UP M2
Undergraduate: Case Western Reserve University (2018)
About me: I was born and raised in South Korea, immigrated to the US, and attended CWRU to study biochemistry. I initially became interested in global health when I went on a mission trip to Cambodia. The realization that the unequal distribution of money, power, and resources throughout the world had disproportionate and tangible effects on health outcomes of people was deeply shocking and frustrating to me. After this eye opening experience, it taught me how privileged I am and that I wanted to fight injustices that vulnerable populations suffer from. Specifically, I want to bring positive changes in the lives of underserved and vulnerable populations throughout the world by tackling issues such as climate change, poverty, and health policy, in addition to providing direct patient care. The problems that resource-poor regions of the world have are multifactorial and interconnected, and I often feel overwhelmed. However, I find solace in the fact that I can collaborate with others, like my fellow WMP members, who truly care about global health issues and want to bring real change.
Crystal An - UP M2
Undergraduate: Case Western Reserve University (2019)
About me: In undergrad, I had several study abroad experiences that shaped my beliefs and goals surrounding global citizenship. These led me to move to Vietnam during my gap year and work for a nonprofit providing education and business support for marginalized women's groups. I am passionate about health equity across variably resourced settings and am particularly interested in addressing affordability issues through cost-effective systems, both in the US and abroad. My long-term goal is to engage in capacity-building work with an organization that invests in local human capital through education.
Helena Baffoe-Bonnie - CP M2
Undergraduate: Emory University (2019)
About me: Growing up as a first-generation Ghanaian-American, I often heard stories of family and friends back home who faced preventable deaths because of inadequate healthcare resources. The gross healthcare disparities that those stories revealed and my knowledge of medically underserved communities in other parts of the world (areas in the US included) have been my main driving force for wanting to become a globally conscious physician. This interest was further affirmed after I had the opportunity to shadow a physician in the very hospital where I was born in Kumasi, Ghana. My strong interest in health-based development work was the motivation behind many of my pursuits during my undergraduate career at Emory University - including pursuing a minor in Global Development Studies. The minor culminated in a capstone project where I examined the effectiveness of health-based international NGOs. I look forward to learning from my peers and mentors as a member of the WMP!
Jameson Mitchell - CP M2
Undergraduate: Washington University in St. Louis (2016)
Graduate: Columbia University (2019)
About me: I grew up in a small town cradled in the Teton mountain range. My childhood was spent exploring alpine trails and my relationship with the outdoors inspired an appreciation for the intricacies of ecosystems and a fervent desire to understand them. With time, my interests evolved from forest insects and rock identification to epidemiology and pathophysiology. At WashU, I majored in Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology and Spanish. During my postbac, I worked with a multidisciplinary team to design and execute a community health intervention to redirect behaviors that lead to unintended teenage pregnancy. This project sparked my interest in addressing disparities in women's healthcare and showed me the critical importance of clinical capacity building and stakeholder-informed research methods. I look forward to working with the WMP to approach global women's health challenges with anthropologic curiosity in order to provide sustainable, setting-appropriate, and culturally informed care.
Kristie Sun - UP M2
Undergraduate: Johns Hopkins University (2019)
About me: Growing up in a multi-generational immigrant household, I was exposed to a broad range of ideas about the meaning of "healthcare." This sparked an interest in how health prevention and treatment manifests in different cultures, which continued to develop through my personal experiences and academically during my time as an undergraduate public health major. As I learned about international public health practices and challenges, I became more curious about what role I could take on. I'm especially interested in the financial and political shaping of healthcare, and would like to explore how international health policy interfaces with local norms and customs.
Nora Lenhard - UP M2
Undergraduate: Middlebury College (2018)
About me: As an undergraduate political science major and global health minor, I sought opportunities to gain different perspectives on health systems and health policy. I spent a semester in nursing school in Chile, which provided unique insights into the ways political and cultural factors shape care delivery. Learning within the context of the Chilean primary care system helped me reflect on some of the strengths and weaknesses of healthcare delivery in the US, and I focused my senior thesis research on the political factors that influence preventive care in the US and Chile. These experiences furthered my interest in local and global health equity and chronic disease prevention and management. I look forward to learning from my peers in the WMP and from global health professionals to develop the skills needed to work towards sustainable, community-driven improvement in health systems and outcomes.
Rachel Bank - UP M2
Undergraduate: Washington University in St. Louis (2019)
About me: At WashU, I studied anthropology with a focus on global health where I learned about the world's different health paradigms. Passionate about exploring health concepts on a global scale, I chose to pursue public health research while studying abroad in Durban, South Africa. I had the privilege to live with a family in an urban Zulu community and developed my own research project exploring the postnatal experiences of low-income Zulu mothers. My current research interests include using a sociocultural and biomedical understanding to find solutions to perinatal healthcare inequities for a multitude of international communities. Being a doctor that treats patients not only as diseases to be diagnosed and treated, but also as people requiring care and support, requires the ability to connect with individuals who come from different backgrounds than my own. I plan to use the skills I develop through the WMP to become an empathy-oriented physician capable of addressing today's greatest global health disparities.
Aparna Narendrula - UP M3
Undergraduate: Rice University (2018)
Graduate: London School of Economics and Political Science (2019)
About me: As an undergraduate, I was heavily involved with my community’s refugee population as well as several global health efforts on campus and professionally, including an internship with the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative in Geneva. I majored in economics and minored in sociology, with a goal of using this background in a career focused on reducing inequity. After finishing this degree, I did my MSc in Global Health Policy at LSE, where I had the chance to delve into many issues of equity and global health with an economic perspective. I am passionate about women’s health and want to help maximize health outcomes and equity in a cost-effective and compassionate manner in the US and abroad. My favorite parts of the pathway are the abundant opportunities to learn from professionals working in global health, and the ability to connect with peers who have similar interests.
Kate Lowe - CP M3
Undergraduate: Tufts University (2014)
Graduate: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (2018)
About me: I am a Colorado girl at heart and love to be outside. This drove me to study geology, and eventually led me to research on earthquake-induced landslides. While I enjoyed geology, my desire to have the skills to intervene in a post-disaster setting partially drove my transition to medicine. I am particularly interested in learning the skills to practice effectively in low-resource settings. My current areas of interest include pulmonary disease, musculoskeletal injuries, and infectious diseases. I am also very interested in the impacts of climate change on health, from vector borne disease distribution to extreme weather related disaster preparedness and response. My long-term goal is to work for an organization (perhaps the WHO) to implement sustainable improvements in healthcare globally, accounting for differential resources and culture surrounding health. My favorite part of the pathway is learning from my classmates!
Kiera Needham - UP M3
Undergraduate: Duke University (2018)
About me: My experiences with medical care in resource-scarce settings led me to major in Global Health and Spanish. Everything I learned in undergrad only reinforced my desire to expand my knowledge and skills base, so that I may serve communities more effectively as a physician. During college, I had the opportunity to engage in research in rural clinics in Zimbabwe, working with a local team to administer a survey exploring status disclosure to children who are HIV-positive through vertical transmission. I also had the chance to assist in the emergency department of a pediatric hospital in Ecuador, where I lived with a host family for a summer. I have not yet narrowed down my exact interests or figured out exactly how I want to incorporate world medicine into my career. This pathway has introduced me not only to new concepts, but also to speakers who have all integrated global health and medicine in a unique way, and to inspiring classmates who plan to do the same.
Maddie McKenna - UP M3
Undergraduate: University of Notre Dame (2018)
About me: After graduation, I spent my gap year working as a 3rd grade teacher at a bilingual school in rural Honduras. I've also been heavily involved with local health organizations in that community, and I hope to continue doing so throughout the future. I am incredibly passionate about women's health, and so I would ideally like to spend my career working to improve maternal/child health outcomes in low resource areas such as Honduras (and also here in my local communities). My favorite part of the pathway so far has been hearing from and being inspired by all of our speakers sharing their global health efforts - and of course, the free food at all of our meetings!
Matt Edwards - UP M3
Undergraduate: University of Florida (2012)
Graduate: East Carolina University (2015)
About me: I swapped my wildlife biologist chest waders for a white coat following several years of international travel and work as a park ranger in New Zealand, teacher in Kathmandu, and medical assistant in India. Inspired by my master’s research on developmental abnormalities in the offspring of pesticide exposed frog mothers, I hope to build a career in women’s health that bridges conservation and medicine to address social and environmental injustices in low-resource communities. My favorite parts of the pathway have been the opportunity to connect with like-minded peers and network with local and international global health professionals.
Obichi Onwukwe - UP M3
Undergraduate: University of Maryland (2019)
About me: During high school, my International Baccalaureate Program mentor would constantly repeat the mantra, "Think global, act local." By the time I was an undergraduate, I was ready to pursue my passion for public health on a global scale. During this time, I pursued a minor in global poverty and began taking courses in economics and agriculture to expand my understanding of global health. I traveled to Ghana to learn about corporate social responsibility and the impacts on the wellness of local communities. During the lasts year of undergraduate, I also that the privilege of collaborating with students in Liberia to address agricultural sustainability and global health implications. I joined the WMP because my prior engagements with global health revealed the multifaceted nature of health. The WMP provides me with opportunities to further explore this alongside my peers and with guidance from experienced mentors. My favorite parts of the pathway thus far have been the global health conferences and the opportunities to network.
Sokhna Seck - CP M3
Undergraduate: Cleveland State University (2016)
Graduate: Case Western Reserve University (2017)
About me: As an immigrant, I have witnessed health disparities both in the setting of an underdeveloped country and here in the US. My firsthand experience with inequities in access to healthcare in Senegal and here in the States has given me a global perspective, while my interactions with patients and families have led me to an understanding of the importance of health and the transformative nature of medicine on a person’s life. One of my long-term career goals is to care for vulnerable populations in domestic and international settings. The World Medicine Pathway has been a great stepping stone and opportunity to learn more about global health and ways in which to incorporate it into my future career.
Sophia Toé - UP M3
Undergraduate: Berea College (2017)
About me: As a tricultural person, I’ve always been excited about global issues. I was born to a Moroccan mother, a Burkinabe father and raised mostly in the USA. My experiences gifted me a unique vantage point which attracted me to world medicine. In college, I was involved in the International Model African Union, an experience that sparked my interest in global health advocacy and policies. My college, located in Appalachia, reinforced the motif that poverty affects all communities. Afterwards, I had the opportunity to work in Honduras, where I witnessed the same health disparities that face many countries in Africa. This experience affirmed my desire to make a difference by joining the community of global health advocacy. The World Medicine Pathway has been a perfect fit for me; I love the many opportunities we have to connect with experts and attend conferences. However, my favorite part is the people in the pathway, who are all exceptional and make the experience more meaningful.