PhD (1983) alumnus Ahmed Mushtaque Raza Chowdhury has won the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) US Medical Award of Excellence for his outstanding contributions to improve the health and well-being of children. The RMHC Annual Awards of Excellence is presented to individuals selected from across the globe and a grant of $100,000 is awarded in honour of the recipients to other non-profit organizations selected by the awardees. Mushtaque will receive the award at a gala in Chicago on 11 November.
Mushtaque studied a PhD at the School from 1983 to 1986 where he evaluated a nationwide public health education programme on oral rehydration therapy (ORT). He was encouraged to pursue a PhD by LSHTM Professor, Patrick Vaughan who he met him while Professor Vaughan was directing a short course on evaluations of community health programmes in Dhaka in 1982. “He also supervised me for the degree. Without his unfettering support during the PhD and afterwards, I would not have reached where I am now. A big thank you to Patrick and LSHTM.”
Mushtaque’s studies gave him the much-needed skill, and more importantly, the confidence to pursue his career in public health and research. “I learned the importance, value and art of publishing.” Mushtaque considers the relationships and connections that he developed with students and faculty to be a great asset to his career. “I worked with several of them on joint research projects, managed selected academic programmes at the James P. Grant of School of Public Health in Dhaka (of which I was the founding dean) and organized conferences and workshops. My teachers and friends at the School continue to support me in furthering my career and the impact of my work.”
On winning the Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) US Medical Award of Excellence, Mushtaque said, “I couldn’t believe it when I was notified of it even more so when I saw a list of past laureates on their website. It made me think – what else can I expect?”
Mushtaque is currently the Vice Chair of BRAC Dhaka and Professor of Population and Family Health, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York. “I have always promoted good research, particularly that relates to implementation and outcome of development programmes. My passion is to work with young researchers to carry forward the bigger development agenda.” In closing, he advised current students to “make best use of the opportunities that the School offers including its student body, faculty, facilities and reputation.”
Congratulations Mushtaque on your award, we are proud to have you as part of our alumni community!
Images courtesy of Ahmed Mushtaque Raza Chowdhury.