An interview with on of our Laboratory Interns: Faiza Hamisu Aliyu
Tell us a little about yourself
Faiza: My name is Faiza Hamisu Aliyu. My first degree is in Microbiology from Kano State Polytechnic. I also have a diploma in Laboratory Science from the same school. I am currently in my National Youth Service Corps service year and I intend to obtain a postgraduate degree in Epidemiology when I’m done.
How did you join the eHealth Africa team?
Faiza: I was posted to eHealth Africa for my service year in August 2017. I had always wanted to serve in an organization that would give me the experience I need to begin my career. When I was posted to eHA, I was quite nervous because I had no knowledge of the organization or the type of work they do.
Describe your experience on your first day- how did you feel? What was running through your mind?
Faiza: I was assigned to the Laboratory and Diagnostics department as an intern. The laboratory department had two ongoing studies at the time which were the Induced Sputum Study and the HemeChip Clinical trial. I remember thinking that the laboratory had so much equipment that I was not conversant with and I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to master them. One of the first things that struck me about eHA was that they use technology for everything! There was so much to learn.
You don’t sound worried anymore, in fact, you look very at ease with all the equipment now
Faiza: After a few days, I realized that there was no need to worry because my supervisor was very patient with me. He trained me for a very long time to use all the technologies in the lab. He always encouraged me to ask questions and to seek clarification whenever I was unsure of something. I learnt to use lab data software like RedCap, FreezerPro, and Odoo. I was also trained to receive, register and process various biological samples. I learned how to use the HemeChip device to determine genotypes from blood samples and how to collect and process sputum samples.
What do you like best about eHA?
I love working at eHealth Africa. The staff are very welcoming and eager to help. No one treats me differently from any other staff even though I am an intern. I love the fact that eHealth Africa provides opportunities for everyone to learn and grow in their career and in any other areas of interest.
Apart from my lab work, I gained several useful skills in different fields. I worked with the Geographic Information Systems team to validate and clean data from the mapping of settlements in Borno state. I also worked with the Monitoring, Evaluation and Research (MER) department to enter data from over 500 respondents in a study to assess access to care by snakebite victims. One of my biggest takeaways from eHA is to deliver every task with utmost diligence.
Is there anything you want to say to the eHealth Africa team and to anyone looking to join?
My NYSC year will be over this month but the experiences and knowledge that I have gained will be mine for the rest of my life. I am very grateful to eHealth Africa and I encourage everyone who wants to grow and gain hands- on experience to join us.