Katie and Deeqa met at UCSF while completing their Master’s degree in Global Health Sciences. Throughout their experience, they frequently revisited the topic of cultural humility and it’s importance in global health. Upon graduation, they began exploring more in-depth ways of integrating these conversations into global health curricula. Their goal is to facilitate growth for future generations of aspiring global health professionals.
Katie Lesyna-Mlaponi, MS
In addition to her work on cultural humility, Katie is a co-founder and Country Director of Thrive Afya Tanzania, a new reproductive health organization based in Tanzania. Katie received her Masters in Global Health Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), where she conducted research on human rights litigation and maternal mortality in Uganda. Prior to receiving her MS, she worked for the UCSF Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health and received a Fulbright grant to conduct research on the disclosure process for HIV positive children in Tanzania. In 2012, she graduated from Scripps College with a BA in Human Biology. Her interests include: adolescent and women’s health and rights, cultural humility, and health system strengthening.
Deeqa Mohamed, MS
When not working on issues of cultural humility, Deeqa works as a Research Associate for the Substance Research Unit of the San Francisco Department of Public Health. In July 2016, she completed her Master’s in Global Health Sciences at UCSF. During that time, her thesis research focused on young Kenyan women’s access to and the quality of abortion and post-abortion care in Nairobi. Much of her time interviewing participants was spent discussing issues of abortion-related stigma and challenges with social support. Deeqa hopes to publish this research in the coming months. Prior to pursuing her Masters, Deeqa worked as a substance use and sexual violence counselor at the University of San Francisco (USF). She received her B.S. in Biology from USF in 2014. Her primary research interests include: women’s health and empowerment, sexual and reproductive health, and the influence of social determinants on health outcomes.
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