At Engineering World Health, it is very important to us that the volunteers we place in our partner hospitals have the skills they need to make a significant and positive impact. All of our Institute participants receive training before working on medical equipment. While our Campus-to-Country programs all train participants at their home universities, EWH’s instructors train participants in-country for our core Summer Institute programs. In just four weeks of intense class and lab work, our instructors cover the function and use of medical equipment, how it typically breaks down in low-resource settings, and how to repair it with the resources available in-country. We depend greatly on their troubleshooting experience and expertise. We are incredibly fortunate to work with such talented instructors who are passionate about sharing their knowledge with the next generation of problem solvers.
It is an honor to introduce our good friends:
Dr. Lawrence Fryda – from Pennsylvania, USA; Retired
Larry is an incredibly experienced professor who has taught students around the globe for decades. In addition to working with EWH, he has helped a group of Ghanaian students learn the fundamentals of electronics, taught college teachers in Thailand the fundamentals of how laboratory techniques are used to teach technical electronics in the US university system, performed a needs assessment in hospitals in Nepal and the Dominican Republic to determine the need for technical support, instructed a group of students in Chihuahua, Mexico on medical equipment repair and aided them in hospital work in rural eastern Mexico, and taught and implemented a medical equipment repair program in the Dominican Republic with a group of student from the ITESM campus, Chihuahua, Mexico.
How long have you been teaching with EWH? This summer will be my tenth year working with EWH in Tanzania. I have also taught equipment repair fundamentals to University of New South Wales and University of Sydney students in Cambodia.
What are your academic or professional interests or achievements? For 35 years I taught industrial electronics and developed international exchange programs for engineering students. Now, I teach the basics of hospital equipment repair. I also respond to student questions during the second month of the Tanzania program.
Why do you like working with EWH? I love teaching. I was lured by the dark forces into university administration but now I am retired and get to do the fun part, which is teaching.
What are you looking forward to most as an Instructor this summer? What brings me back each year is the energy gained from working with talented young people.
Dr. Robert T Ssekitoleko, EngD – from Uganda; BME lecturer at Makerere University
Robert moved to the UK when he was a teenager, then earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Medical Engineering from Queen Mary College at the University of London, and a Doctor of Engineering in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland. Afterwards, he moved back home and has been working tirelessly to elevate the field of BME in Uganda. He is now the Acting Head of the Program in Biomedical Engineering at Makerere University in Kampala, and has been instrumental in developing partnerships with universities such as Duke, Case Western, and Columbia.
How long have you been teaching with EWH? Six Months, since the EWH Uganda program started.
What are your academic or professional interests or achievements? I’m interested in Global Health Medical Devices and Innovative BME Education.
Why do you like working with EWH? It provides resources that we have been missing in our country for so long. It makes it easier to build our profession.
What are you looking forward to most as an Instructor this summer? Meeting enthusiastic students who will solve a number of instrumentation challenges.
Dr. Michael Moreno – from Texas, USA; Engineering professor at Texas A&M University
Dr. Moreno has been working to develop biomedical engineering in Rwanda for many years. Since 2016, he has been teaching EWH’s Rwanda Summer Institute participants, and has been essential to EWH’s partnership with Texas A&M University. When he’s not teaching with EWH, he works as the Director of the Biomechanical Environments Laboratories at Texas A&M and the Orthopedic Biomechanics Research Laboratory at Houston Methodist Hospital.
As Dr. Moreno shared recently with Texas-based newspaper, The Eagle, he believes the Summer Institute program is “a transformative experience” for students, as well as “a great opportunity to do humanitarian work in an environment with a lot of support.”
Dr. Iyad Obeid – from Pennsylvania, USA; Engineering professor at Temple University
Iyad earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering at MIT, and then earned his PhD in Biomedical Engineering at Duke University. He is now an associate professor at Temple University, and is a recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER Award as well as a Lindback Award for distinguished teaching.
How long have you been teaching with EWH? This is my fifth year! Nicaragua all the way!
What are your academic or professional interests or achievements? I do neural and biomedical signal processing, and I love to tinker with things.
Why do you like working with EWH? I love how much I get to learn and see! The hospital engineers in Nicaragua are so knowledgeable and generous with their time. I love the Nicaraguan people too!
What are you looking forward to most as an Instructor this summer? Revisiting some of my favorite hospitals and clinics.
Thank you so much to our instructors for taking the time to introduce themselves! And, of course, thank you for all the work you do in making EWH’s Summer Institute programs successful each year.