Archana Devi Gnanasekaran

MPH in Health Sciences

An inclination towards the human body and oral health informs Archana Devi’s goal to raise awareness of disease prevention.

“Oral health is the window to the overall health” – Archana Devi credits this quote towards helping her think about the importance of oral health, and how inadequate maintenance can affect the areas outside the mouth and create systemic illnesses.

During her Bachelor of Dental Surgery, she fell in love with the topics for human biology, public health, and disease prevention. After working as a junior dentist at various rural and urban camps she discovered a desire for a practicum-based approach to pursuing work in public health, joining the MPH program for its interdisciplinary teaching of health systems, and the diverse set of backgrounds and ideas from the cohort.

Bringing her dentistry background into her Master of Public Health degree, she learned more about addressing and illuminating health issues and plans to use her knowledge to create oral health disease prevention strategies.

“My education helps me focus on diagnosing and treating oral problems, helping me raise awareness of disease prevention by gain access to and disintegrating social barriers,” she explains. “By observing people's attitudes about their health understandings, and the barriers they face accessing the health system, I have learned to address and illuminate the root causes health issues.

As an international student, Devi highlights how it may be difficult for new students to transition to the Canadian curriculum. However, she advises new students to not be afraid to speak to faculty and students for support.

“Prospective students will get the real-time experience of studying and working with diversified health professionals globally. The cohort, researchers, and professors welcomed me with care, support, and guidance, and helped me feel included amidst a new social culture.”