The Frist Global Health Leaders (FGHL) program affords young health professional students, residents, and fellows the opportunity to serve and train abroad in underserved communities for up to one semester. In doing so, they will bolster capacity in clinics in need of support as well as offer training to community health workers to promote sustainability upon their departure from these communities. As part of the program, they blog about their experiences. For more information, visit our program page.

John Ewing, MD

John Ewing grew up in Atlanta, GA. He enjoyed competitive sports, music, and the outdoors, particularly fishing and camping.  In school, he was interested in science and math. He attended Vanderbilt University where he ran for the varsity men’s cross-country team.  John graduated with a B.E. in Chemical Engineering. During his time as an undergraduate, experiences working in a biomedical research laboratory and shadowing clinicians inspired John to become a physician. He was excited to attend Vanderbilt School of Medicine to pursue his MD. John genuinely enjoyed each of his clerkships, but his impactful experiences in the OR and the leadership and tenacity that he observed in general surgery residents caring for critically ill surgical patients, sparked John to pursue surgery. He was again excited to remain in Nashville for surgery residency at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.  John remains undecided about his next career step, but his interests include abdominal organ transplant, critical care, minimally invasive surgery, and health services and process improvement research. 


Dr. Evans

Dr. Evans grew up in Franklin, Tennessee, and completed his undergraduate studies in biochemistry at the University of Georgia. He completed medical school at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and has remained at Vanderbilt to do his general surgery residency. He is interested in pediatric surgery, and during medical school and residency his research interests have included surgical outcomes work and biomedical informatics. He intends to pursue a master's in informatics during residency. Dr. Evans also enjoys spending time with his wife and dog (Tita and Lou), as well as hiking, woodworking, reading, traveling, and rooting for the Georgia Bulldogs.


David Xiao, MD

David Xiao is currently in his third year of general surgery training at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Born in Virginia and raised in China, New York City, and a small town in Connecticut, he developed a great appreciation for different cultures and ways of life. He attended Boston College for his undergraduate studies and went on to Georgetown University School of Medicine to earn his doctorate in medicine. He is very interested in findings ways to improve access to affordable and quality healthcare for the poor and vulnerable, both domestically and internationally. He looks forward to serving and learning from the Kijabe community. 


Shayan Rakhit, MD

Shayan Rakhit is a general surgery resident at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is from Johns Creek, GA, received his AB in Molecular Biology and a certificate in Global Health and Health Policy at Princeton University, and received his MD at Vanderbilt. Prior to medical school, he spent a year working with underserved populations at a Federally Qualified Health Center in Long Branch, NJ. He is in his third year of training and plans to obtain a M.Ed. in Community Development and Action during his upcoming research time. He has a particular interest in both social determinants and outcomes of health and healthcare. He is excited to travel to and learn from his experience at Kijabe.


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