George Lubowa

Master of Nursing

George Lubowa“I am hopeful that I will be able to combine my life experience, my passion for the poor, my public health and now nursing into a rewarding career that has a significant impact on people and their health.”

George Lubowa searched the country for a nursing program that was accelerated, reputable and affordable. With two bachelor’s degrees and a Master’s degree in public health in hand, he was not interested in an undergraduate nursing program.

When he discovered the Master of Nursing offered by the University of Minnesota he decided that, if admitted, he would temporarily relocate from Boston to complete the program.

From his early days growing up in Uganda, George found his passion in helping those in need. His first memories from the early 1980s include images of Ugandans suffering through a violent civil war estimated to have left 300,000 civilians dead. The five-year struggle took a profound human and economic toll on citizens, with hundreds of thousands of displaced refugees.

“There was so much hopelessness and a great need for all types of interventions. People had lost everything: there were thousands of orphans and starvation,” said Lubowa. “Then, just as the war ended, the country was overtaken by HIV, with people dying every day. The HIV epidemic brought more devastation and I wanted to step in and do something to help.”

Lubowa worked in HIV prevention and health promotion in Uganda, and later in water sanitation in rural areas of the country.

In 2001, he moved to the United States and completed his second bachelor’s degree at Cambridge College and a Master’s in Public Health at Northeastern University in Boston.

“To have an impact, I really felt I needed the clinical nursing skills to complement my public health background,” he said. “The nursing piece will allow me to be involved in direct care and give me credibility as an advocate for people who are poor or living in under-resourced areas.”

Lubowa left his his wife, Keziah, and his three children (ages 2, 7 and 8) in Massachusetts to complete the intensive 16-month MN program in Minnesota.

“Of all the hard decisions I’ve made, leaving them was the toughest,” he says. “When I went home to Boston after the first semester, my 2-year old was not sure who I was.”

Lubowa says he wants to affect big societal changes that will lead to better health for people who are not currently thriving. He says he may want to continue his nursing education after completing his Master in Nursing and someday wants to work in Africa lifting up underserved communities.

“I am hopeful that I will be able to combine my life experience, my passion for the poor, my public health and now nursing into a rewarding career that has a significant impact on people and their health.”