A bit about me

Oh wow, its me.

What my blog will and won't be

I hate blogging about this, almost as much as I hate the word blogging itself. Words on a computer screen have limited meaning. They are two-dimensional. They are pixels. People aren't. I am not, nor are those that I will meet over the next year.

As for me, I am an introvert. I hate attention. I like listening, not sharing. This is the first time I've put my feelings on a public medium; however, many of my friends tell me this is a great way to express myself. (Says Chukwukpee Nzegwu whose LinkedIn is found here, he literally wrote this sentence)

I believe in a physical journal. Anytime you write something in a blog, however, you weigh every word. Either explicitly or implicitly, you filter your emotions and thoughts. In hopes of not doing so, I will share pictures and videos to offer a less filtered view of my journey.

The Keegan Fellowship

The real question, though, is what am I doing over this year. Well, its called the Keegan Fellowship. Everyone talks about traveling the world; few actually do. I am incredibly fortunate to have this opportunity in the context of a project that has been a integral part of every aspect of my Vanderbilt experience as well as my upbringing.

The title of my project is Reengineering Access: Translational Challenges and Culture Considerations of Western Medical Technology. My interests are twofold. One, as a biomedical engineer, I am interested in the technical challenges that influence the spread of Western medical technology. What technical challenges exist in the transfer of medical technology when taken (and often developed in and for) from high-resource settings to low-resource settings? What constitutes a low-resource setting? What strategies have been successfully implemented? What strategies have failed?

The second part of my project is much more interesting . Implicit in my project statement is the idea that Western medical technology is spreading. and by extension, that a different medical tradition is being displaced in the process. As such, I am interested in how people of different cultures interface with technology different. Why do certain cultures embrace Western medicine rapidly, and others do not? How does this process happen? Who do people view as authorities on medicine when Western medicine and technology disrupt societies?

Answering these questions is only part of my goal. This year will push me to be a better person. To assess who I am, where I am, and who I want to be. Traveling alone for so long will be hard. Being away from everyone that has impacted my life for the past 22 years is a strange thought, but I look forward to meeting new people in new places. Being "American" has less meaning than ever before and identifying with others seems harder than ever. I called my blog "BME beyond US" for a reason. Just as much as this is about experiencing how biomedical engineering can address challenges in global health, it is about expanding my definition of "us". Stay tuned!

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