By: Keisha Jefferies, PhD candidate, Dalhousie School of Nursing
Keisha Jefferies is currently completing her PhD at Dalhousie. She is an advocate for health equity with a particular focus on the African Nova Scotian experience. Keisha is a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholar having spent time doing research in Tanzania as well as the 2016 recipient of the Dr. Ron Stewart Award for Student Leadership in Global Health. She will also be presenting at Global Health Day on Sept. 26 as part of the poster displays in the Tupper Medical Building Link. Read more about Keisha’s recent experience at the PEGASUS Conference here.
On April 27-29th, 2018 I had the opportunity to attend the PEGASUS Peace, Global Health and Sustainability Conference at the University of Toronto. The theme of the conference this year was “From Evidence to Action” and it was attended by clinicians, academics, graduate students and key stakeholders from across Canada as well as internationally. The PEGASUS Conference was on my radar for a few years after first discovering it in 2015 while attending the Canadian Conference for Global Health in Montreal. I was unable to attend in 2016 however, I am thankful that I was able to not only receive a conference bursary through the Johnson Scholarship Foundation in order to attend the conference but also that the abstract for my thesis proposal was accepted for a poster presentation. It was a very exciting and beneficial experience to present my intended work on the Leadership Experiences of African Nova Scotian Nurses to a new audience. My poster was well received and I was able to establish several great connections with attendees.
Over the 3 days, I was able to enjoy and participate in very stimulating and timely workshops and presentations related to various aspects of local and international global health as well as peace and sustainability. I am really impressed with the caliber of work being done by clinicians, students and faculty across Canada as well as in Toronto. Many of the presenters shared powerful messages and stories related to vulnerable group in Canada such as immigrants and refugees and their struggles to attain and navigate the Canadian healthcare system. Another important message that was threaded through several of the keynote presentations and session presentations was the innate biases ingrained in policy and the need to examine, deconstruct and rebuild more inclusive, appropriate policies. I was able to capture a few great moments during the conference and these can be found on my Twitter page @KeishaJeff56.
I would like to acknowledge the Johnson Scholarship Foundation, the Dalhousie Global Health Office and School of Nursing as well as my PhD thesis supervisors (Dr. Megan Aston and Dr. Gail Tomblin Murphy) for providing funding to travel, offering guidance throughout my studies and enabling me to be actively involved in local and international global health initiatives.
To learn more about the Global Health Office’s Diversity programs.