The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and beyond
I remember being a student at the School and wondering about my next steps. What on earth was I going to do? Having left clinical medicine (a career within which the stepping stones on which one must tread in order to progress are relatively obvious) and entered into the world of public heath. Now the problem with public health (in my opinion) is that everything seems so damn interesting. So, what to do?
Well, the truth be told, I didn’t really follow a neatly defined strategy of any description. I’m not writing this by way of providing advice but rather just as an account of my experience as a newly graduated public health professional.
I landed up staying at the School for a further two years working as a Clinical Research Fellow in the Epidemiology department, during which I started the open access journal Globalization and Health (which is about to hit it’s 10 year anniversary) and did research into the area of maternal and child health. I guess that hanging around in academia for a few years is never going to do your career any harm and it’s a great way to get a deep understanding of a particular subject area. To progress in that environment however would almost certainly require of me that I do a PhD and so after two years I left the School and took a position as the Head of Science and Research at the World Cancer Research Fund based in London.
To save you reading a point by point account of my entire career to date, I’ll summarise the rest by saying that after working at WCRF, I was a little lost as to what to do or where to go but through a fortuitous (if not somewhat convoluted) series of consulting jobs I landed up working at UNITAID at the World Health Organisation. I also did a part time MBA. From there I took a position as the Director of Eliminating mother to child transmission at the Clinton Health Access Initiative, after which I moved to Dublin in order to get married to my now lovely wife.
So now I find myself in Dublin – certainly not the hub of Global Health. What next? Well, through the magic of technology, I’ve found a way to stay involved with the global health discourse. I’ve started a Global Health YouTube channel, which includes videos about on (among other topics) how to find work in the Global Health space. Here is a link if you’re interested.
What next? To be honest, I’m not sure. At the moment I’m back doing some clinical work in a Dublin hospital and applying to the Public Health higher specialist training in Ireland. I don’t know exactly what the future holds but I’m excited about the possibilities.
If you’re interested in working in Global Health then can I suggest that you go to my YouTube channel. Watch the videos and subscribe (you’ll get an email alert whenever there is a new video posted). The channel is also connected to a Google + page that includes a community for people who want to network with others interested in Global Health. Anyway – good luck – I hope our paths cross even if it’s in the electronic world of YouTube!