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Sini Nwaobi ′07

One day, I hope to open up a group of medical clinics all over the world. It’s going to take a lot of work, but it’s something I’ve been interested in for a long time.

Traveling and learning about different cultures has always fascinated me. So has medicine. I’m a pre-med biology major as well as a Bonner Scholar, and my main area of service focuses on hospitals and health care. I volunteer as a Spanish interpreter at the Regional Medical Center, and it really keeps me on my toes. One minute I’m in labor and delivery and the next I’m in trauma or cardiology. I love learning about people and helping them understand and cope with illness.

I started planning a medical mission trip to Nigeria the summer after my first year at Rhodes. I spent three months doing research, learning the ins and outs of how to obtain medical supplies and figuring out border and transport regulations. Then, over the summer after my sophomore year, I spent three weeks in the village of Issele-Mkpitime, Nigeria. Along with another student, I brought medicine and equipment, talked to the nurses and doctors and observed how several clinics and hospitals in the area were run. One of the huge problems in the village is typhoid because the main water source is contaminated, so we funded and helped to build a new well which should help the problem considerably. Those three weeks were an incredible, humbling experience.

Last year, I helped put together a new service organization at Rhodes called “On the Global Scene.” It focuses on understanding international health issues, increasing advocacy on campus and organizing medical mission trips to impoverished villages all over the world. The group has already established an annual trip to Reynosa, Mexico in conjunction with Rhodes’ Tex-Mex Border Ministries, and we have a trip to Ecuador planned for summer 2007.

Rhodes has definitely prepared me for a future in the medical profession. The Biology Department is rigorous and very rewarding, and I’ve been given the opportunity to confirm my interests in the subjects I find the most fascinating. My professors are passionate, wonderful mentors who inspire me to continue trying to make a difference in the world.

I plan to go for my M.D./Ph.D. in either orthopedics or neuroscience, and I always want to be involved in medical mission trips. When it’s time to open my own clinics, I know I’ll be prepared.

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