Living the Dream – My Journey to GNH and my Hopes for the Future

My name is Fred Chalula, a third semester and scholarship student at the Metropolitan University College (Global Nutrition and Health (GNH)), from the Republic of Zambia.

Back home, I have worked for the country’s Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Health, respectively, mainly at sub national (and to some extent at national) level in nutrition and health programme management. I have had to plan, implement, monitor and evaluate food security, nutrition and health programmes in the Ministry of Health in collaboration with local and international NGOs. Among the local NGOs that collaborate with Ministry of Health are organisations supported by such bilateral organisations as USAID,CIDA, DFID and JICA. International NGOs are mainly UN agencies including UNICEF, WFP and WHO.

I came to learn about the Metropolitan University College’s GNH education in 2010 through a friend from Malawi who gave me the website of the university. This was when I had felt the need to upgrade my qualification going  by the challenging job that I initially was doing, and also the need for my country to have well-schooled staff in the prestigious nutrition field. Then, I have always been convinced that one day, I may have to contribute my knowledge and expertise to international engagements be it at sub regional level in Africa or outside Africa where there would be need in terms of nutrition and health. And a qualification that could only match my dream then, and now my aspirations, is the GNH education at Metropol in Copenhagen, Denmark!!

Therefore, pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Global Nutrition and Health at Metropolitan University College, has not only been a dream come true, but an amazing experience too, because the education meets my aspirations and provides an opportunity for thought-provoking and emerging contemporary issues in the field of Nutrition and Health. There is an enabling environment ranging from various teaching aids, standard IT equipment to hardworking teachers among others. Additionally, the global inclination of the programme, and the intercultural diversity cultivated among students make the education more interesting and appealing to most students from across the globe. In the process, I have also had to adapt to a more student centred type of learning, most of the time accomplishing individual academic tasks like preparing for lessons and doing homework. Group assignments on each module have too been a well assimilated process and a great opportunity for learning how to work in multicultural or multidisciplinary teams in future.

After my training, I hope to integrate my professional background with the new skills and competencies from the education. I also have the motivation to continue to put in my very best so that in future I should be part of that force that would help reduce malnutrition levels and other nutrition related conditions among the vulnerable groups, especially children, at national (my home country) and global levels. I will help advocate for increased attention to the ever increasing burden of disease and the health inequalities that characterize our societies especially in Third World countries.

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