Prof. Olayinka Omigbodun has many firsts to her name, but the first female provost of UI’s College of Medicine is one first that brought the limelight to her. She’s a mother of three and a wife to the former provost of the College of Medicine, UI, Prof . Akinyinka Omigbodun
Professor Olayinka Omigbodun was raised by her Sierra Leone mum when she lost her dad at age 3. Her mom gave her and her siblings the best upbringing. Young Omigbodun decided to give life her best through excellence.
When asked if she ever dreamt of becoming a provost, her reply confirmed that she was only eating the fruits of excellence.
Her career path into psychiatric medicine started during the medical ritual of rotation- where the medical student is shuffled into different departments of medicine to find what unit appeals to their interest. For her love for children, she wanted to venture into the pediatric unit. But after just a few working days in the pediatric ward, she realized that her love is only for healthy children and not otherwise, as sick children only made a mess of her emotions.
Prof Omigbodun’s journey into psychiatric medicine caught her with many questions. One of which was, why patients with mental illness claimed to see things that others couldn’t see. Regardless of the questions and worries she found psychiatric medicine interesting, especially the glaring link between the effect of environment and upbringing on childhood and the consequences in adulthood.
An inquiry into the challenges of being a Provost thus far rendered Prof Omigbodun the opportunity to give a loud piece of her mind. She mentioned the damage that insufficient funds do to the school, the injury of incapable hands to work with, and the pain of over-centralization of processes which poses a delay in employment and replacement of staff who have retired or passed on.
Her joy in practicing psychiatric medicine has known no bound as she has mentees around Africa. Her children (of which two are Ph.D. holders) call her, their role models, and one of her children is married to a mentee of hers. She also values the fact that she has brought unity to several families through help depressed youths.
She counsels people to slot in their best in whatever they find doing so they can birth excellence.