A 12-minute bus ride from the south-end to the north-end neighborhood was what opened my eyes to the world of community health. These two parts of Hamilton, Ontario, are 5km apart, but their residents have on average a 21-year difference in life expectancies. What is even more shocking is that the north-end life expectancy is worse than that of India, Mongolia, and Turkmenistan. This was the beginning of my inquiry in the field of community health as a freshman in college. I was motivated to find reasons for these glaring disparities.
My name is Manasi Parikh, and I am currently a senior at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. I am pursuing an Honours Bachelor of Health Sciences with a specialization in Global Health. Over the next four posts, I want to share my pursuit of becoming a public health physician. My primary motivation to write this series was to advocate for careers in public health and discuss the impact a public health physician and good public health programs can have on a community. Additionally, I also want to give readers a glimpse into the Canadian medical school system.
I want to begin by discussing what inspired me to pursue my specialization and a career in public health, a reflection on innovative courses I was able to take through my specialization, specific opportunities in public health for interested students and lastly my future aspirations after becoming a public health physician. Furthermore, I am extremely passionate about engaging students and young professionals in public health which I also hope to achieve through this series.