I woke to the best news I could imagine today. I received the following text from Russia, from a former MYO alumni, Aina Ihambo.
Good afternoon Mr. Rob. I would like to let you know that 21 June 2019, I obtained my degree as a medical graduate in Moscow Russia. I am grateful to MYO for strengthening my knowledge. Now I’m officially Dr. Ihambo Aina Talishi.
So, what amazing thing is this? This young child from a township in western Namibia, makes her way half-way around the world to achieve her dream of becoming a doctor. What obstacles must be overcome when born in a developing country that is a mere two decades out of the grasp of the Apartheid South African government? For one, in addition to her native Oshiwambo, her 2nd language Afrikaans, and her 3rd language English, Aina had to master Russian to attend medical school in Moscow.
Multiple languages is common in Africa–but learning a vastly different Slavic language in a year and then attending medical school in that new language. Well that’s no small thing.
Aina had to overcome a substandard public school system to score high enough to quality for a scholarship, and also navigate the many obstacles and potential pitfalls that exist in countries that are mired down in poverty.
Unfortunately I do not have any pictures of Aina from her MYO days, or at least none that are tagged. But I did notice that in our November 2009 Newsletter, Aina received our top learner award for the year. So even in grade 9, she was already demonstrating her potential and drive. In those years, Aina would have been taught by two of our finest former teachers and mentors–Lindsay and Jeremy Hoover.
Aina’s journey and story are her own, but all of us are proud that MYO has a chapter in that story.