Udo Obiechefu, studying Public Health, is a JustJobs Scholarship finalist

udoMost children when asked what they want to be when they grow up respond with some of the answers that we are all familiar with. “I want to be a doctor”, “I want to be a lawyer” and “I want to play football”. Till this day I can still vividly remember my 2nd grade teacher asking me that question. Being the shy kid I was at the time I shrugged and said I didn’t know as a way to escape the pressure that comes with answering questions while the world, or in this case, second grade classmates watched. This answer was deemed unacceptable by my teacher so she framed the question a different way. “What makes you happy Udo?” After a few moments I responded with, “Helping people”.

The goal of helping others and having a positive impact on someone’s well being has led me to this point. Aiding the public in the prevention of disease and attainment of optimum health is the core motivating factor that has driven me to attain my Master’s in Public Health. My core values have lead me to this point. The educational qualifications I am seeking are tools that will help me achieve my full professional and personal potential.

After receiving my MPH I hope to attain a position in the field that affords me the opportunity to work directly with a population in need. Being able to have a direct and measurable impact on the population I serve is important to me. In August of 2011 I began my year of service with the Atlanta Health Corps, which is a public health component of the Americorps program. During my service I have had the opportunity to work in both the non-profit and government sectors. These experiences have showed me that having a sustainable impact can be achieved in any environment as long as there is passion and dedication to those that you serve. Receiving an MPH will equip me with the tools to enter any public health domain. I hope to become a leader among my peers within the public health community with a specific focus on infectious disease and also will look to conduct meaningful research within the infectious disease realm.

I did not immediately apply for graduate school following my graduation from Georgia Southern University. Having this period of time between my educational endeavors has allowed me to develop a path and a plan for my professional goals. I know looking back now that I would not have been ready to undertake the rigors of graduate study immediately following the completion of my bachelor’s degree. Almost four years later I feel that I am finally where I need to be. I have a passion for learning and a hunger for growth and I am truly excited about the path that I am on. For as much as this scholarship can do for me, you also will benefit from enabling a passionate, determined, and prepared student to further his goal of improving the lives of others.

We are proud to announce Udo Obiechefu is one of the current JustJobs Scholarship finalists. Vote for his essay (Facebook ‘Like’ and other social media sharing options in left column), click the ‘star’ just above comments section below, and/or leave comments of support to help us with the selection process.

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  • Chris Godfrey

    Udo has been an extremely positive role model to me as both a student and professional. His attention to detail and thorough approach to both his work and his studies have set a standard that is sure to lead to success. This honor would be fitting for an individual that has contributed so much in an effort to further himself and those around him.

  • Errik Ejike

    Udo has been such a great working partner with me in the African-American Male Initiative here at Armstrong Atlantic State University. He is the driving force for keeping the young men in our program academically focused and drives them toward academic and personal growth. His personality is a complete 180 degrees different from mine, and it works for his and our best interest. He has always been there, front and center, when I or anyone else needs him to be. He is always lending a helping hand. He constantly is pushing himself outside of his personal comfort zone so that true growth can occur. Even though he does these things without expecting anything in return, it would be a great honor for him to be recognized still for the hard work and dedication with a reward!

  • Nashia C. Whittenburg

    From experience, Udo is a dynamic individual. His Essay is a mere glimpse into the type of person he is, and the character he has. Working for the African American Male Initiative at Armstrong Atlantic State University isn’t an easy position, nor is it a position with designated work hours. When the students need Udo for whatever reason- be it guidance, advice, or assistance with their studies- he is there. He takes the time to really engage the students, get to know them, and is candid and honest with the challenges he himself has faced being an underrepresented student. His Essay highlights his professional service, and I can attest that he has taken those skills, and directly correlated them to his work at Armstrong. The work he did with the Atlanta Health Corps gave Udo the skills and knowledge that he has shared with his students enrolled in the AAMI program. He has taken the liberty to research the importance of a healthy lifestyle as it relates to academic success, as well as hosting various discussion groups on subjects that relate to issues affecting the African American, and African American Male population. Further, he has organized panel discussions on topics ranging from “Safer Sex, Healthy You” to “Social Streotypes and Stigmas” bringing together prominent figures in the Savannah area. Udo is beyond desrving of this scholarship. He is a student who gives without the pretense of receiving, who gives without the mention of what he will receive in return. It would be nice to see him receive in return.

  • Obinna Obiechefu

    Wow, what a positive message to share with the world about what your aim is and what you want to accomplish in the future. Great job. Keep up the fantastic work bro.

  • Chuck Bauer

    Amazing piece. I’m not surprised though being that this quality and critical analysis is a given when it comes to you. I have no doubt that your aspirations will put you in high places Mr. Obiechefu and that spirit of service I’ve always known you to have will be an integral part in it.

  • Brandon Omar Street

    Having known you for approximately 9 years as a roommate and coworker, I fully understand you passionate cry in this poignant essay. I have to put all joking aside and give you just praise for deciding to go into a thankless field. Also having government and nonprofit backgrounds has to be a plus. It is amazing to see how the four roommates all did not feel as if they were ready for master’s schooling, but have come to the realization that now is the time and what better way to start than by letting the world know about ultimate goal. I still see you helping thousands. Congrats! And, being a Georgia Southern University graduate has to help in being considered. Georgia Southern-Eagles! Fight, fight, fight!