#BridgingtheGap: An Interview with Tani Imasogie

As highlighted in many of our previous blogs, we want to continue shining a spotlight on the many individuals currently making their way through the field of healthcare. This week, we had the incredible opportunity to speak with Tani and get an insider perspective on why she chose to pursue pharmacy.

Hello, thank you so much for joining us today, could you please introduce yourself?

Hello everyone! My name is Tani. I am Nigerian, born in England, and raised in Canada.

Where are you currently at and what are you currently working towards?

I just finished my Doctor of Pharmacy degree a couple weeks ago. I’m currently studying for my licensing exam, which will allow me to do direct patient care. So if I wanted to work at a community pharmacy like a shopper’s drug mart or hospital as a hospital pharmacist, I can do so. I’m really excited for this next part of my journey and I plan on also starting a residency job at a pharmaceutical company.

When did you first become interested in the field of healthcare, particularly in the field of pharmacy?

I first became interested in pharmacy in high school. I wanted to work in healthcare but I didn’t want to be a doctor, and my dad suggested pharmacy, so I started working towards it.

As a minority, what has your experience been like?

My experience in STEM as a minority, not only as a person of color but even as a woman, has mostly been positive so far. I know I’m really fortunate to be able to say that. I’m surrounded by a lot of smart brilliant women and especially in pharmacy, and there’s definitely a good balance of men and women. I will say that I’m the only Black person in my entire graduating cohort of 240 students, so that was very apparent to me but it didn’t really affect me in terms of how I handled myself or mentally. It was definitely something that was very apparent and it just kind of reiterated that there’s still a long way to go, and I just did my best to represent women, people of color, and black people while I was there.

What is a major lesson you’ve learned in your journey so far?

A major lesson that I’ve learned in my journey so far is honestly to be open to trying things that you might not think you’re be interested in. I didn’t think that I would be interested in the pharmaceutical industry, yet here I am about to start a job there in the fall. That’s a decision I made in this last year, so I just kind of went for it. If there is anything or any aspect of schooling or your career that you might want to explore, even if there’s opportunities for placements that you don’t think you would like or think will be challenging, just go for it! You might end up finding something that you’re really passionate about or you really care for that you wouldn’t have found if you didn’t take that chance. Just be open and try to diversify yourself and try different things. Go to the random club event or random conference or do that random placement that peaks your curiosity.

What does diversity mean to you?

Honestly, I know a lot of people say it’s being able to see people who look like you reflected in various places in healthcare, but to me it also means seeing people that don’t look like me too. People of different backgrounds, different cultures, even people who might have a disability by society’s standards. To me, just seeing anybody who is capable, anybody who is passionate in what they do in that space, whether they look like me or not, is diversity. Diversity can come in many different forms and I know that there’s many different ways that we can continue to be inclusive. Obviously being a visible minority as a woman and as a Black person, those are some of the more very apparent things that you can see when you first glance into a room and take a look around. Diversity comes in a lot of different ways, languages, cultures, abilities. So that’s what diversity in healthcare means to me, not just seeing professionals that look like me but also patients who look like me, and getting to collaborate with people from any background.

Together we can make an impact on the health of the nations and the generations to come.

The mission of WHEF is to increase accessibility to medications and supplies for healthcare facilities in Guatemala and Grenada. If you are interested in hearing more about the work we are doing, or in connecting with us, you can visit our website, check out our instagram or facebook, or sign up to receive our newletters. If you would like to support us in our work, please donate here.

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