Naomi Martin, from Canada, shares her experience of Distance Learning at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

Naomi MartinHi Naomi, thanks for sharing your experiences with us. Can you start by telling us about your academic and professional background?

I have always believed that continuing education is essential in enhancing one’s career, and that insights gained from professional experience are critical in the pursuit of higher education.

After graduating as a Doctor of Medicine, I pursued a career in the healthcare industry, and over the last decade I have held increasing responsibilities in medical, commercial, marketing and business operations in national and international capacities in various therapeutic areas. Throughout my professional journey I have made a point of ensuring that I engage in continuing education, earning my MBA and a certificate in health economics, both of which have contributed to my professional competitiveness.

Why did you choose to study by distance learning with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and which programme did you study?

As I advanced into more global collaborations in my work, which required me to understand diverse health systems, the opportunity to earn a master’s in Global Health Policy through LSHTM’s distance learning programme proved to be ideal. My insight from my work across different countries is that effective healthcare delivery is hindered by the existence of silos separating private and public, medical and non-medical, providers and beneficiaries in health-care systems. Many health issues are left unsolved simply because the different parts of the system are unaware of the each other’s capabilities, or are unreceptive to collaboration.

What has been your favourite aspect of the programme?

My favourite course was the HIV module under Professor Peter Piot, where I learned that the successful approach to a global health issue must go beyond scientific and clinical – the political, social, cultural and economic aspects are just as important – and needs the expertise of people from diverse disciplines.

How has the programme helped your career?

I led projects related to HIV in both Asia and North America while taking the course and was able to apply my learnings in my work! Studying while working did present its challenges. The academic load can be daunting, so I just tried to divide each module into sections and pace myself across the months.
Did you have any concerns about your course? What were they?

I have to admit I particularly dreaded the assessed assignments which always seemed to require more time than I had anticipated!

What have you gained from studying this MSc?

All in all I am grateful to have received an education from a prestigious institution that has reinforced my passion to bring high quality, affordable and equitable healthcare to as many people as possible through well-crafted health policies.

To find out more about distance learning with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, click here