Joseph Atavalna, a graduate of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine from Ghana, ‘Veterinary medicine is one of the best professions!’

February 17, 2022
  • Introduce yourself, please.

     — My name is Joseph Atavalna. I was born in 1964 in Bolgatanga, the Republic of Ghana.

  • Tell us about your career choice.

     — I grew up in Northern Ghana, a region where there were many domestic animals that I had to take care of since childhood. I left school in 1983 and dreamed of becoming a veterinarian. Later on I was lucky to move to the Soviet Union. I began to study Russian in 1984 at the Poltava Agricultural Institute, and in 1985 I became a student of the Veterinary Faculty of the Ukrainian Agricultural Academy (now NUBiP of Ukraine).


  • What are the most vivid memories of your student years?

     — Student years are the years of youth. It was a different but very interesting time. Students not only from the Soviet Union and Ghana, but also from many other countries of the world studied at our faculty. Of course, we were friends, and I still maintain friendships with many of them.

  • Do you remember your teachers?

     —  Of course, I do. I warmly think of Professor Herman Oleksandrovych Himmelreich, Professor Stanislav Kostyantynovych Rudyk, as well as professors of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology Ivan Serhiyovych Nagirnyy and Volodymyr Petrovych Polishchuk. Dmytro Mykhailovych Vovk, our teacher of pharmacology, and Oleksandra Petrivna Burkat, our teacher of Latin, held amazing classes. I also have wonderful memories of the Vice-Rector for International Affairs, Myron Fedorovych Povkhan and the Dean for the work with foreign students, Vitaliy Yosypovych Lyubetsky.

  • What was your career path like after graduating from the Veterinary Faculty?

     — After returning home, I worked as a veterinarian in one of the regions of Ghana. In 1994-2004 I worked at the Ministry of Agriculture of Ghana, and then became a teacher at the Veterinary College, where I worked from 2004 to 2009. I am currently the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana.

  • What do you think about your home faculty?

     — Unfortunately, I haven't visited my home faculty for a long time. The plans for our meeting of 1990 graduates were disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, thanks to modern technologies, I regularly monitor the development of my home faculty. I studied here, so I can confidently state that the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, and the university as a whole, is actively developing and improving. I firmly believe that my home faculty is really the best faculty of veterinary medicine in Ukraine!

  • Can you give some advice to Ukrainian entrants?

     — Veterinary medicine is one of the best professions! It has become my vocation. Choose the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine. Volodymyr Kasyanenko Department of Animal Anatomy, Histology and Pathomorphology is a real temple of science and a museum of anatomical art! Compared to when I was studying, the faculty has changed a lot. Under difficult political and economic conditions, the university finds the opportunities not only to constantly improve its material and technical resources, but also to conduct a lot of fruitful research. If you want to become a real veterinarian, choose the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine! I'm sure you will not regret it!

  • Thank you for the pleasant conversation.

     — Thank you! I wish further prosperity to my home faculty and to NUBiP of Ukraine!


The conversation was conducted by the Head of
Academician Volodymyr Kasyanenko Department of Animal Anatomy,
Histology and Pathomorphology,
Oleh Melnyk


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