This feature introduces some of the outstanding people who have participated in the IAPHS Mentoring Program. Our program introduces individuals needing advice on career-building in population health to mentors willing to help them along.
In this issue we spotlight mentor Arjumand Siddiqi and mentee Edwige Dossou-Kitti, who have been meeting regularly over the past year. Edwige, a medical student (class of 2023) at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, is the first woman in her family to pursue higher education. Arjumand is an Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Population Health Equity at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto.
When the pair began their work together, Edwige reports that she had many goals in mind – gaining insight on public health issues, increasing networking opportunities, understanding career opportunities, and getting advice on how to approach various projects. Arjumand worked with her to break these goals down into achievable segments, which made it easier for Edwige to keep track of successes as well as areas that needed improvement. With Arjumand’s mentorship, Edwige landed an R13 NIH grant this summer and, as a result, was able to present research at a national conference in Hawaii.
Arjumand reports that she “approached mentoring by imagining what I could do – big things and little things – that would make a substantive impact on Edwige’s professional trajectory and, on her awareness of her own brilliance.” Edwige says that Arjumand “understands how important it is for me to distinguish myself in academia, and can relate to the challenges I am facing as a first generation student-professional. Having Arjumand as my mentor meant there is always someone a press of a button away whenever I needed advice…. She lends her expertise whether it is for a career or life-related question, and never hesitated to reach out to her network when I needed guidance more specific to my career. She is continuously dedicated to helping me succeed. This is just the beginning for us, we have so much more to do. I look forward to the progress we will make in the coming year.”
We congratulate both for their inspirational work together and invite others to get involved with the program. Please visit the Mentoring Program Website to learn more and to sign up to be either a mentor or mentee during 2020.