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MPH, Masters Public Health, African Immigrant

Born and raised in Kenya, I am proud to be an African woman who has the opportunity to pursue a First World education in the service of my people. Yet, I am very much aware of what I see as my moral duty to go back to Africa and serve my people, after having developed the tools and resources to do so effectively. Health care in my country was a disaster when I left two-and-a-half years ago, to come to the U.S. Now, with the raging ethnic conflict that shows no sign of letting up between the major tribal factions in Kenya, disaster has become calamity. I am afraid for my people and I ask you to prepare me to go back and help them after graduating from your program.

I have long been mesmerized with communication and this is why I chose to do my undergraduate work in Information Systems Technology. Health care is my central professional focus in life, and this is why I now want to turn my full attention to the study of the public administration of health care systems. I have a profound appreciation for to health care systems. Of course, as an African immigrant, I have also sought to prepare myself to earn a living, and to help my family, and this was one of my inspirations for completing a Certificate Program in Medical Billing and Coding at XXXX University. This program was invaluable insofar as I was able to learn an enormous amount of medical terminology and now feel very comfortable in this highly specialized area of public management. My greatest strengths as a candidate to your program are the fact that I am an extremely hard worker and a very quick learner; I have almost always succeeded in whatever I put my mind to. Kenya is in need of major help in terms of a complete health systems overhaul; especially in such a way that health care is made increasingly available to those who have heretofore not been able to afford it. I seek the tools to make this possible.

I am especially attracted to the idea of studying at XXXX University, and it is my firstchoice since I am particularly interested in Epidemiology and research into tropical diseases. It will be important for me to put my Swahili back to work someday. Although I am now beginning to even dream in English, I see my future as entailing a lot of research work in Swahili as well. The most important thing to me has always been my volunteer work; back in Kenya, I had the privilege of serving for some time at the XXXX Home for Abandoned and Orphaned Children. I have had a broad mix of professional experiences that have helped me to understand a variety of core issues that are of central importance to health care reform. I look forward to contributing to the international feel of your academic community at XXXX. I assure you that I will apply myself to the maximum degree possible to excel in your program. I am looking forward to very long hours studying.

The greatest contribution that I might be able to make to society would be to help initiate movement in progressive directions in health care policy especially in Kenya in light of epidemiological considerations. My country is a nearly complete failure at not only preventing disease, but also diagnosing it accurately. The government has been so focused on wealth creation that it has forgotten that sick people make up an inefficient work force. And I think and work as an African, knowledgeable about and concerned with all African societies, not just my native Kenya. In fact, I have traveled to many African countries. I have lived and worked in Harare Zimbabwe, and visited Botswana, Malawi, Uganda, and Tanzania. Yet it was always my dream to study towards the Masters Degree in the U.S. This is why I attended the XXXX University in Nairobi. I would feel honored to be admitted to your program and in this way have the privilege of contributing to our response to the increasing need for persons who understand African health sectors and can are able to critically analyze, develop, and advocate policies that might stem the tide of death and disease in Africa.

My professional experience here in America has also helped to prepare me for study on the graduate level. I am currently the Operations Manager for XXXX in Reston, Virginia. I manage all financial audits in the company, oversee coding and billing functions, and train staff and assign duties in the operations department, teaching employees, for example, how to mine data easier in Excel. I assist in with Customer Service and the education of clients, especially in terms of Home Health Regulations I possess strong communication skills and I am adept at customer service. My organizational skills have helped us to increase customer satisfaction levels from 85% to 98% and to realize100% on-time delivery of assigned projects. We help clients in getting the appropriate reports needed for the PPS Review depending on the application they are using. I have a strong commitment to the team environment, and look forward to contributing further to progressive and creative group dynamics in the development of policies and procedures. I also oversee the A/R and A/P functions of the company using Quickbooks. I am experienced at leading diverse, cross-functional teams in the fulfillment of corporate productivity, quality enhancement and bottom-line objectives and I was recently honored with the Customers Come First Award for consistently resolving customer difficulties in an expedient and tactful manner.

Before coming to America, I spend nearly two years as a Systems Manager for XXXX International in Nairobi. I managed and maintained the office network; defined and implemented new revenue cycles using online biometric billing and coding software; and developed training programs and material for training the users of the online billing and coding software. I also trained hospital personnel so that they were able to how to use coding and billing software. I provided online help and support for software users over the phone and in person. Finally, I coordinated the development team to provide client feedback and enhanced implementation of ongoing releases, serving as part of a team presenting the benefits of the Biometric Coding and Billing Software to hospitals, clinics, and insurance companies.

I am most concerned about the critical public health issues faced not only by Kenya, but most developing countries, the way that trends in health care tend to be limited by the same powerful forces of globalization that drive the economy. Exploding rates of urbanization greatly exacerbate the central problems in Africa as elsewhere and I am deeply passionate about and devoted to the study of demographic trends and epidemiological transitions, especially in light of malnutrition. I especially look forward to learning a great deal more about the industrialization of food production, globalization of the food supply and its distribution, and marketing channels, along with what all of this means for the diet of the average person. With the massive move to cities, lifestyles are increasingly sedentary and obesity has gone global, further exacerbating chronic yet treatable diseases in Africa.

African leaders must be encouraged to realize that if they want better health to work as a poverty reduction strategy, they must provide better health care to the poor. We cannot let the costs of health care drive impoverished households ever deeper into poverty. My interest in public health has continued to grow the more that I have become aware of the intricacy of the medical system, especially as a result of working for a technology company, facilitating collaboration between insurance companies and hospitals. It is here that I hope to fully pursue my capacity as a communicator who is able to build and continue to strengthen understanding between diverse organizations that all too often adopt adversarial positions. I see this as one of the greatest tasks of the public management specialist, bringing parties together and building bridges of cooperation where they had not existed before. My candidacy to your program is bolstered by the fact that I am already a seasoned administrator with hands-on experience in my native Kenya. I am accustomed to working in Kenya where we do not have a standardized medical system and there is still a lot more use of paper rather than technology. Kenya, in particular, is in desperate need of my help as a professional health systems designer and administrator, and I ask for admission to your program in order to fulfill my mission. I want to thank you for your consideration of my application.

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