The other day, I got to enjoy a hearty conversation with Dr. Afua Oteng Asare on Mind Your Business. She is a Ghanaian-trained optometrist and vision health researcher passionate about vision health outcomes in disadvantaged and vulnerable populations. Her research focuses on understanding the barriers and disparities in access to vision care services and creating effective vision care interventions to improve vision health outcomes amongst the disadvantaged. Besides a Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree from KNUST (Ghana), Dr. Oteng Asare has a Master’s in Public Health (MPH) degree from Harvard University (USA), a Masters in Vision Science (MSc.) degree from the University of Waterloo (Canada) and a Ph.D. in Health Policy, Management and Evaluation from the University of Toronto (Canada).
During her years of study, she obtained many academic awards which include (but are not limited to) the Harvard Presidential Tuition Scholarship (2010) from Harvard University, The Ross C. Purse Doctoral Fellowship (2018) from the Canadian National Institute of the Blind (CNIB) and on two occasions the prestigious Ezell Fellowship from the American Academy of Optometry. Dr. Oteng Asare has presented scientific research at several scientific meetings and published 11 research studies in American, Canadian, and Ghanaian scientific journals.
Dr. Oteng Asare lives with her husband and two young children in Salt Lake City, Utah in the United States. She is employed as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences and the John A. Moran Eye Center at the University of Utah and sits on two eye-health committees with Prevent Blindness (a leading volunteer-led national eye health organization). In her spare time Afua enjoys travelling, hiking, working out and playing with her children.
I recall the first and only time I saw her before this interview, I was drawn to her smile and graceful aura. Of course, the ‘ahoshesheh’ in me followed her on LinkedIn and the more I read about her, the more I was really blown away.
And so you know I was super excited to interview her right? Here is a summary of what I gleaned from this amazing Ghanaian doing exploits and impacting people around the world:
- Education was a big deal in their family, her parents were very invested in their academic performances. Her parents were constantly encouraging them to move forward and her experience of being the only female among boys has helped her get to where she is in life.
- She gives everything 100% by preparing adequately before showing up for any task, listening attentively and being open to talking with others.
- She takes advantage of every minute as much as possible. For instance while driving, she may also be listening to a podcast or purchasing things for the house while in the bathroom.
- She is not afraid to ask for help. Example, her mum came to help with her young children when she was doing her PhD and then later they hired a nanny for a few hours a day.
Afua shared many other useful nuggets in this interview, especially for ambitious women who wear many hats. Listen to the full episode and let me know what lessons stood out for you OK?
And please, don’t forget to remain super fabulous always!
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