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STJR Graduate Bernard Appiah Continues Industrious Life

Posted May 12, 2014

appiah-headshotWriting, editing, research, international projects, multiple academic degrees, a graduate student wife, and three children—the list of things that keep STJR graduate Bernard Appiah busy is not short.

In fact, if something characterizes Bernard, it is that he has always liked to keep busy. As an undergraduate in Ghana, Bernard volunteered as editor for multiple student organizations. After graduating in 2002, he became a drug information pharmacist and publications manager at the National Drug Information Resource Centre in Ghana. He also contributed to science radio and TV shows and even authored a book and edited others on using medicines safely.

Bernard’s productivity got him several awards, including a Council of Science Editors scholarship that allowed him to attend its 2007 annual meeting in the United States. At that meeting he heard about the STJR program, which he entered the next year.

In his first year, Bernard did an internship with Science Editor, the CSE magazine. Then he assisted with AuthorAID, a project that helps scientists in developing countries to publish their research. He graduated from the STJR program in 2010 and went on to pursue a doctorate in public health at Texas A&M.

Bernard has remained active in science communication, writing articles for the Canadian Medical Association Journal, SciDev.Net, and other publications. Also, he remains involved with AuthorAID and the Centre for Science and Health Communication, which he founded in Ghana.

Bernard emphasizes understanding the audience’s culture whenever he writes and edits. For instance, he explained that “because illiteracy tends to be very high in Africa, you really want to break down the language in a way that the people can understand it.”

Bernard is now a research associate at the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health, focusing on how communication can improve health care in underserved and culturally diverse areas. He received his doctorate in public health in 2013. Bernard’s  bachelor’s degree is from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. In addition to his master’s degree in STJR, he has a master’s in development communication from the University of the Philippines Open University. He and his wife—who is currently pursuing her master’s in public health—have three children, ages 2, 5, and 7.

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