School of Population Health

Student Profile

image - Abela Mahimbo
Master of Public Health / Master of Health Management (Dual Degree)
Mode of study : 
Face-to-face classes
Country : 
Previous Education : 
Doctor of Medicine at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences

I had the prestigious opportunity to do a Master of Public Health / Health Management degree at UNSW. Coming from a clinical background, I had limited experience and exposure to the field of public health. I was excited at the commencement of the internship program at WHO SEARO offices as I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to gain hands on experience on issues pertinent to public health.

My experience at the WHO/ SEARO was not only enlightening but also very pragmatic. Working under the Emergency and Humanitarian Action (EHA) department, I was exposed to daily assignments that introduced me to critical aspects in emergency and preparedness responses in the management of disasters. Having done a dual degree encompassing health management was an added advantage as I practiced the role that effective leadership and management skills played in creating a healthy workplace environment thereby increasing organizational efficiency. In addition, the exposure to a multitude of multidisciplinary professionals from different backgrounds was highly invaluable.

The internship program was indeed a forum of not only gaining novel knowledge but also sharing experiences due to the existing cultural diversity amid the professionals in the organization. I was constantly challenged to think critically and engaged in diverse discussions concerning communicable diseases, primary health care, disease surveillance and epidemiology; which were very productive and informative.

I believe that this program will be a stepping milestone as I embark on a public health career. I strongly urge students to make use of such an opportunity as the benefits are quite remarkable. The learning scope within the WHO is quite broad and very interesting. It is a lifetime opportunity where you get to learn from experts in the field who have been there for a long time which enables you to know what to anticipate in the real world.