Marsellah Ogendo Otieno, Deputy Principal, Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC) Mombasa

'I plan to spend the rest of my career empowering health professionals.'

I am proud to be a teacher of health professionals. On a day-to-day basis I have the opportunity to persuade, to challenge, to influence and to inspire—to help bring out the best in health care providers. This journey began when I enrolled at the School of Pharmacy. I hoped for an education that would enable me to develop new medicines for Africa, to provide drugs when and where needed, and to engage colleagues in collaborations that improve the health status of humanity. While I learned a lot, I found that there were other ways that passion in this field could be ignited and the training improved.

I decided to be a teacher, but I wanted to do things differently. Then I met Carol Nyambura when she was facilitating a leadership course for health workers. I wanted to be like her—the passion, the connection, the humor, the reflective moments and the dialogue. She had learned it from Maastricht and highly recommended it to me.

Through the MHPE programme, I'm learning that great teachers don't just teach, but they challenge their students to find out on their own how best they can improve their situations. They provide them with the tools and walk with them through the journey. I plan to spend the rest of my career empowering health professionals. Right now, I'm redesigning a part of a curriculum. My long-term goal of improving health outcomes keeps me going.

MHPE cohort 2012-2014