Public Health Students Tipped on Career Opportunities

Mr. Fredrick Odhiambo, Director of Public Health and Sanitation, Ministry of Health Kisumu County

Students in the School of Public Health (SPH) have been urged to undertake professional networking and join volunteer ventures as a way of honing their professional skills and growing their careers. This was asserted by various speakers who graced the school’s career talk, held on Friday, April 1, 2022.

The Chief Guest, Mr. Fredrick Odhiambo, Director of Public Health and Sanitation at the Ministry of Health Kisumu County, lauded JKUAT’s quality programs for producing competent health managers, noting that his skills have enticed his peers to enroll at SPH.

He also emphasized networking as an astute tactic in penetrating the job market, citing examples of how networks he formed in JKUAT helped his county during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The networks I made during my studies served as a strategic resource when the county faced a shortage crisis during the pandemic and I was able to mobilize the required materials, thus resolving most of the issues at hand,” recounted Mr. Odhiambo.

Prof Kenneth Ngure, Dean SPH during the career talk

Mr. Odhiambo also touched on other components of the profession. These included connecting one’s hobby to their career, publishing in scholarly journals, enrolling in short courses such as Health promotion, environmental impact assessment, among others for public health practitioners to transform our country.

Prof. Kenneth Ngure, Dean SPH, advised students to take their careers seriously, which he explained begins at the beginning of the course and requires discipline and good time management skills. This, he asserts, is the precursor to good grades, which are pivotal in obtaining scholarships for those wishing to pursue a career in academia.

“I encourage you to volunteer whenever possible, without regard for monetary gain, as this will improve and strengthen your skills for a successful career. The interviews you undertake will also help you improve your presentation skills, which will boost your confidence for future opportunities,” he asserted.

Ms. Caroline Musita, Lecturer at SPH discusses the numerous career opportunities in Public Health

Ms. Caroline Musita, a lecturer at the School, advised students to prioritize government opportunities because they provide “360-degree exposure” that can be applied to other situations. She urged students to take attachment seriously as it provides a glimpse into the real work environment, noting that current interviews are output specific and test a wide range of skills in order to select the best candidates.

Dr Daniel Mokaya, Lecturer at SPH engages the students during the Career Talk

Another lecturer Dr. Daniel Mokaya, highlighted the available opportunities for students, saying that the knowledge gained is useful in formulating interventions by various agencies whose objectives are to improve the lives of the community.

He advised the students to hone their research skills because the precision of details in data collection is critical for agencies before developing interventions for behavior advocacy and, ultimately, social change.

The event also saw the establishment of the School of Public Health Students Association (SOPHSA), as a platform to further nurture the students’ professional skills and readiness for the corporate world.

Staff and Students from School of Public Health, with the Chief Guest Mr. Fredrick Odhiambo

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