UHCL students visit Kenya; study healthcare, visit cultural sites

July 8, 2022 | UHCL Staff


Taking students on an international study trip is a lot of work, but University of Houston-Clear Lake's Professor of Healthcare Administration Femi Ayadi said it's absolutely worth it.

Six healthcare administration students, as well as 12 students in the Anthropology program took a two-week trip to Nairobi, Kenya last month. The healthcare group visited four area hospitals along with Ayadi and her faculty co-lead, Assistant Professor of Critical Social Psychology Enciso Dominguez.

"We visited four hospitals; three in Nairobi and one in Mombasa. My students met with the healthcare administrators from each hospital, participated in a Q and A about hospital management, toured each hospital, and learned about how healthcare is being administered in Kenya," Ayadi said.

"The biggest thing is for my students to see that the world is so much bigger than the U.S., and that in other countries, they are concerned with many of the same issues we talk about regarding healthcare quality and operations. We are learning that we can learn from one another and that in healthcare, we all have the same issues we want to resolve," she said.

Meagan Horne, who is working toward her Master of Healthcare Administration, said her trip to Kenya enhanced her as she proceeds with her educational journey. "I learned that some hospitals in Kenya have achieved zero hospital-acquired infection and have great employee engagement and patient satisfaction, which are problems that some hospitals in the U.S. continue to struggle with," she said. "The backbone of any facility is employee engagement, patient experience, and patient safety. If these aren't the focus, then all academic programs and large clinical programs will fail."

Horne said she would take these lessons forward as she continued her education. "We are all here to serve our patients and give our employees the support they need to take care of patients," she said.

Associate Professor of Anthropology Dawit Woldu and his faculty co-lead, Professor of Sociology Mike McMullen took their students on a safari, as well as to museums, and other sites of historic and cultural significance.

For more information about UHCL’s education abroad programs, go online.