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Caldwell Dominican Sister Earns Medical Degree

Uchenna Okereke, OP, M.D

CALDWELL, NJ - July 31, 2009 -- Uchenna Okereke, OP, MD the youngest member of the Caldwell Dominican Sisters - received her Doctor of Medicine degree, specializing in Community Health, during graduation ceremonies on May 17, 2009 at The George Washington University in Washington, DC.

Uchenna connected with the Caldwell Domincans through Mary Christine Ford, OP, a member of the Caldwell congregation. “Mary Christine knew my desire to join a religious community and had a long-term relationship with many of our Caldwell sisters.”  During her four years of medical school, Uchenna kept a close e-mail connection with her Caldwell family, who in turn supported Uchenna (and all her classmates!) with a steady stream of prayer.

A native of Mbaise-Owerri in Nigeria, Sister Uchenna has lived in the United States for 20 years.  She graduated from Caldwell College in 1996, with a double major in Biology and Theology and a minor in Chemistry.  Then before beginning medical school, Sister Uchenna taught high school theology and science in Jersey City.

A dual commitment to ministry among the poor and a strong desire to provide good medical care to all people in need motivated Sister Uchenna to realize her dream of becoming Doctor Uchenna.  “I have always seen healthcare as a need as well as a right.  Through my life experience (both here and in Nigeria) good healthcare has always been portrayed as a privilege which further transforms ‘social stratification to health stratification’ where the ‘haves and have nots’ are very visible.  Money becomes the sole determinant of the fate of the health of disenfranchised persons.  Like many others before me who have been touched by this division, I felt called to help fill the void.”

Uchenna Okereke, OP, M.D. is now an intern at Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, New York. “I hope to serve in the future by providing healthcare services to the underserved of our society," she said.








For more information about the Caldwell Dominicans visit their website.