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Masters of Health Informatics U of Waterloo.

Ras_Patrick 1 / -  
Dec 29, 2021   #1

Please provide a personal essay (maximum 500 words).

Describe your education and work experiences that have brought you to the decision to apply to the Master of Health Informatics program. Include information on how a Master of Health Informatics will help you in your future career.

"Help, help, help! My baby is not breathing!" The 15-year-old mother screamed during a roadside delivery I encountered en route to school. She was profusely bleeding, helpless, and covered in blood; her only hope was anyone altruistic to get them to the hospital safely. Terrifically naive about deliveries and post-delivery care at the age of 15, I carried the mother at the back of my roadmaster bicycle to the nearest health center 20 kilometers away. Despite all endeavors, they passed on, as there was no transfusable blood type at the facility. This experience ultimately shaped my life and career purpose.

Throughout college, I industriously explored interests piqued by this experience. Beyond coursework in community reproductive health, epidemiology, and biostatistics, I volunteered in community health programs in diverse settings where I learned about barriers to health confronting pregnant women, newborns, and people living with HIV. My undergraduate program culminated in a senior thesis exploring the inclusion of pregnant women and vulnerable populations in the national HIV strategy through a cross-sectional review of the national strategy and HMIS data from five districts. The findings of my thesis inspired me to launch a $10,000 community health grant to enhance the capacity of health units to adopt innovative digital health technologies and expand access to health services.

Over the past seven years, I have made career transitions within public health, impact measurement, big-data philanthropy, and recently epidemic intelligence at the United Nations Global Pulse - exploring radio context analysis to signal early warnings of health risks in Uganda. With each experience, I obtained essential skills to institute and lead a health informatics social enterprise that integrates my passion for computer science and public health with managing and leading development programs. I have supplemented my skills in computer science - acquiring certifications in Python, R, and SQL. The missing fragment is to supplement my experiences with in-depth, sector-specific knowledge and advanced training in Health Informatics.

The MHI program will enhance my training and expertise to set my career on a successful path to design scalable informatics and big data solutions that foster equitable healthcare. By the end of the program, I will possess a diverse skill-set, advanced knowledge, perspectives, and tools to lead health informatics innovations, offer policy solutions, and apply critical thinking to solve complex health issues. The Intellectual environment at Waterloo, excellent teaching methods, diverse student community, and brilliant teaching staff will foster a culture of teamwork, collaboration, critical thinking, and innovation.

I plan to institute a value-based, health informatics, service-learning fellowship program that integrates cross-functional partnership, systems thinking, and systems community design to reduce the global delivery-implementation gap for health programs. As a program model, I will recruit passionate public health, health informatics, and computer science talents and provide leadership training that incorporates servant leadership and professional development with self-reflection and professional skills - like storytelling, human-centered design, community design, and systems thinking. By leveraging the knowledge, resources, and Waterloo's research community, The program will significantly contribute to training, inspiring, and mobilizing leaders to promote and preserve health.
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 12,303 3989  
Dec 29, 2021   #2
"Help, help, help! My baby is not breathing!"

Definitely a dramatic opening that sets up an exciting personal statement, only to be disappointed by the succeeding paragraphs. Rather than reading about the development of your interest in relation to the build up to your college education, you skipped a whole section of your educational background. Where is the pursuit of medical studies or training after that event? Why should I believe that this event is even real if you did not illustrate how you were enlightened and encouraged to pursue even something as simple as a Red Cross training certificate? The drama will only work if it becomes the basis of your training in a chronological manner. You cannot skip directly to college in this case.

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