Nursing + Global Health = More Possibilities!

April Zhu
Class of 2023, Master of Science in Global Health Program at Duke Kunshan University

Before enrolling in the DKU Global Health Program, Shengjie (April) Zhu worked as a registered nurse at Grace General Hospital in Winnipeg, Canada. Faced with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on healthcare services in her first job, she developed interests in pandemic and global health and had new ideas about her future career.

“The interdisciplinary nature of global health would extend my career choices by offering me a broader view of healthcare.”

A versatile editor

In May 2023, while awaiting the graduation ceremony, April received a job offer from Shanghai Jiahui International Hospital. She started working even before receiving her diploma.

Apirl on her thesis defense

Jiahui is the first authorized international hospital in Shanghai and the first private hospital to be enrolled in the National Health Insurance Program with flexible pricing. In addition to providing high-quality medical services, the hospital is involved in various projects such as medical education and industry cooperation.

“The department I work in is called J-Med, the team responsible for medical research and continuing education at Jiahui Hospital. We also serve as the Branch Office for the New England Journal of Medicine in China, handling the journal’s marketing, operations, and local collaboration in China,” April explained.

Her daily work at J-Med is not limited to content production and editing. In addition to managing the social media accounts, she also handles workshops and facilitates the NEJM publishing. “The team is not very large, so each person needs to take on diverse responsibilities,” she said.

April (left) with the chief editor of European Journal of Surgical Oncology in Beijing

Maximize the DKU Resources

April highly suggests current students maximize their 2-year program experience, making good use of DKU’s resources.

“Faculties at the Global Health Research Center are very approaching and supportive. Not only did they offer research opportunities for students, but also hands-on guidance to sharpen their skills.”

While at DKU, April worked as a research assistant in Professor Lijing Yan’s team. Under Prof. Yan’s guidance, she learned how to write research proposals and follow up on research projects. Besides, April collaborated with Prof. Chenkai Wu to write popular science articles on healthy aging.

April (center) with MSc-GH Program faculty and classmates after her thesis defense

Looking back at the interview with Jiahui, one assessment required her to write a research summary. She said, “The work experience at DKU made it an easy task for me, and therefore, I secured the job offer in Jiahui Hospital.”

In addition to faculty support, she also utilized other student services from the DKU community. The Career Development Office helped with CV editing and mock interviews and provided timely vacancy notices from international and local employers in China. All were helpful to pave the way for her career development in China.

April (right) with her classmate at DKU

“DKU unleashed my potential. I am happy to follow my interests and transform my role from a clinical nurse to a medical editor. I am expecting more possibilities for my future in the healthcare industry.”