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Walden Magazine // Nov 01, 2012

Commitment to Social Change Scholarship Recipients Announced

January 2012—In December 2011, Walden University awarded seven incoming graduate students the Commitment to Social Change Scholarship. This scholarship recognizes the social change contributions the recipients have already made in their respective fields and ensures they will continue to do more of the same as they work toward their Walden degree.
The next application deadline is April 1, 2012. Read the application criteria.

This doctoral student received $25,000:

Recipient: Luswa Lukwago
Hometown: Kampala, Uganda
Title: Epidemiologist for the Department of National Disease Control at the Ministry of Health in Nakasero, Uganda
Program: PhD in Public Health

Social Change Achievement: Since 2000, Luswa Lukwago has been involved in disease outbreak investigations including Ebola, meningitis, cholera, plague and dysentery. As a result of his work, the Ministry of Health has improved early detection, registration and reporting of priority diseases; improved capacity to confirm priority diseases; increased the value of data; strengthened the use of data for decision making and, most importantly, increased the speed of transmitting information for appropriate action.

Social Change Goal: To establish a system for epidemic prevention and response at all levels.

These doctoral students received $5,000 each:

Recipient: Olufolakemi Mercy Anjorin
Hometown: Ibadan, Nigeria
Title: Program and research officer at Food Basket Foundation International in Ibadan, Nigeria
Program: PhD in Public Health

Social Change Achievement: Olufolakemi Mercy Anjorin has promoted the delivery of nutrition interventions to at-risk population groups, including improving coverage of micronutrient supplementation from Vitamin A to Zinc in children and pregnant women, promoting maternal nutrition through nutrition education and community food demonstration and working with community volunteers to set up a positive deviance hearth program to rehabilitate severely malnourished children.

Social Change Goal: To work with teams of young nutrition scientists, community stakeholder groups and policymakers to establish a Nutrition Action Network to scale up nutrition actions at the community level with a focus on the most underserved communities by the year 2015.
Recipient: Lydia Asana
Hometown: Orlando, Fla.
Title: Director and CEO of the African Renaissance Ambassador Corp. in Orlando, Fla.
Program: PhD in Public Policy and Administration

Social Change Achievement: Lydia Asana co-founded the African Renaissance Ambassador Corp. in September 2006 to facilitate sustainable development, promote cultural diversity, encourage scientific progress and support reversal of brain drain through partnerships. She believes that by educating and engaging individuals that people will be inspired and empowered to contribute to positive change in Africa as well as within their multicultural communities.

Social Change Goal: To establish the nonprofit as an influential, exemplary organization that educates, engages and empowers Africans worldwide.

Recipient: Silas Ochieng Oswe
Hometown: Nairobi, Kenya
Title: Information systems quality assurance associate consultant for Kenya National Single Window System in Nairobi, Kenya
Program: PhD in Management

Social Change Achievement: As an audit manager at Equity Bank, Silas Ochieng Oswe ensured that modern banking facilities were rolled out to the full population in Kenya, increasing the number of branches from 18 to 68 and extending banking to very remote areas where there was no electricity or water access.

Social Change Goal: Improve the speed and efficiency of cargo clearance through the Kenya National Single Window System to increase transparency among government agencies in Kenya, eliminate paper-based cargo clearance systems and establish a computer-based system.

These master’s students received $2,500 each:

Recipient: Karyn Cole
Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.
Title: Administrative assistant for Management Planning Inc., in Atlanta, Ga., and founder of Project H.O.P.E.
Program: MS in Nonprofit Management and Leadership

Social Change Achievement: Karyn Cole established the organization Project H.O.P.E. (Healing Opportunities that Protect and Empower women and children) as a transitional safe house to restore and rehabilitate female victims and survivors of human trafficking and commercial exploitation as they transition from sexual slavery to self-sufficiency.

Social Change Goal: To restore and rehabilitate the lives of victims through a collaborative learning program that offers personal development, vocational training, substance and sexual abuse counseling, interpersonal skill building, community involvement and independent living skills.

Recipient: Onika Henry
Hometown: Bon Accord, Trinidad and Tobago
Title: Information, education and communication officer for the Tobago HIV/AIDS Coordinating Committee Secretariat
Program: MS in Mental Health Counseling

Social Change Achievement: Onika Henry believes that a people’s experiences, voices and priorities should be the starting point of any development, behavior or social change effort. She interacts directly with communities, policymakers and medical professionals through her work as a playwright director to create and produce theater performances, educational workshops and research to explore the relevance of traditions and social values in a contemporary society.

Social Change Goal: To facilitate social change at varying levels in society through drama therapy and psychodrama, with an emphasis on issues related to HIV/AIDS, including prevention, stigma and discrimination and gender issues.

Recipient: Jacqueline Seawright
Hometown: Tampa, Fla.
Title: Decision support coordinator, St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital in Tampa, Fla.
Program: Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA)

Social Change Achievement: Jacqueline Seawright works in the “Throughput Innovation” department at St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital in Tampa, Fla., to create and implement new and innovative procedures that increase satisfaction and provide a higher quality of healthcare to patients. To combat obesity, in particular, she created an African Dancersize class that makes exercise fun for everyone.

Social Change Goal: Leverage her organization, Creating Original Resolutions for Enhancement (C.O.R.E.), to positively impact the lives of patients by increasing the payment of child support and improving parenting skills.