I was asked, as a former graduate of the Masters of medical science in Public Health, to write a little about how the course has helped me further my career. However, this is not easy to do without a little background detail.
Before I enrolled in 2007, I was a general dental practitioner for fifteen years. Having moved from Queensland, Australia to Sweden, I decided to apply for the Masters in Public health course with a view to returning to Australia and working as a civil servant for Queensland Health, the state’s own health department. The MPH course content had many of the facets needed for me to accomplish this, from epidemiology and statistics to health economics, policy and communication courses.
The entire Masters course culminated in a thesis whereby we had 4-6 months to research and write about a topic that interested us from the previous 18 months coursework. I decided to write about a concept known as “social capital”, and how this contextual phenomenon influences health outcomes. As a result of my thesis, the epidemiology course leader offered me a PhD research position here at Lund, fully funded for 4 years.
So, in a sense, it feels that I have never really left. I now have my own office in the same building where I had my lectures and I still see many teachers and students I studied with. Admittedly, I didn’t return to Australia as planned, but that was only because I found something a lot more fascinating to do. I am now building upon the epidemiology and statistical knowledge I gleaned from the Masters course and I guess I will be here at Lund a little while longer!