Born to Nigerian parents in New Jersey, Ekene Aguh originally planned on pursuing a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree and becoming a pediatrician. Working toward this goal, he earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey and said he was then drawn to enter medical school in the south. He was accepted into GA-PCOM’s Biomedical Sciences program and made the decision to attend due to the College’s “committed faculty, network of doctors, diversity and proximity to Atlanta” where he saw great potential for medical experience. He then chose the Organizational Development and Leadership (ODL) track because it combines organizational theory and individual self-discovery to provide a leadership perspective to the Biomedical Sciences (MS) degree.
However, Ekene changed his career goal midstream. After spending time in the Biomedical Sciences program and learning more about himself while being exposed to a wide variety of scientific and research opportunities, he decided to pursue a career where he felt he could interact one-on-one with patients, learn about how medicine works in human bodies, and aid in changing the profession’s shortage of African-American men. Knowing that he would be in a “nurturing, diverse and helpful environment,” he applied to PCOM’s School of Pharmacy and was accepted into the class of 2019.
The soon-to-be graduate expressed that without the time management, critical thinking, application and efficient study skills he learned from the ODL program, he would not have been ready to pursue a professional degree. He said, “The Biomedical Sciences/ODL program has helped me grow tremendously in understanding what it takes to be a professional student who will one day be in a position to serve and take care of others. The program has helped me mature and work on my personal and academic skills and has also given me more confidence in the sciences and the roles of health care in today's world.”
Ekene’s time in the program allowed him to “self-reflect and understand what it means to be a doctor," he said and added, “To never give up, never accept mediocrity in life, and to always push and believe in yourself is truly what the Biomed/ODL track embodies… Faculty members, who took time to talk to me and help me grow, really care for their students and go above and beyond to see us become successful.”