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    by Ngozi Osuagwu, MD | May 30th, 2016


    When I graduated from high school many moons ago, it was very simple. It was just my immediate family that attended and afterwards we went out for dinner and that was it. There was no fanfare. Granted I grew up in New York and none of my friends had parties. I moved to Columbus and it appeared that everyone had huge graduation parties for high school. My second child was one of them. However this past weekend, my last child graduated from high school and she chose not to have a party. For her, she felt that graduating from high school in her own words was, “no big deal”. I have to admit I was happy she chose not to have a party, it made the occasion a lot less stressful for me, but I do not agree with her that it is “no big deal”.

    Graduating from high school is a “big deal” especially when it comes to health and graduating from colleges is even a bigger deal. According to the Robert Wood Foundation:

    • College graduates can expect to live at least 5 years longer than individuals who have not finished high school.


    • An additional four years of education reduces the risk of chronic disease like diabetes, heart disease, obesity and smoking.


    • The more years of education a mother has received, the more likely her infant is to survive and thrive past the first year of life. The infant mortality rate for women who never graduated from high school is nearly double that of women with college degrees.


    • Children with less-educated parents are less likely to succeed in school. The U.S. is the only industrialized nation where young people are less likely than members of their parents’ generation to be high school graduates.

    (To learn more about education and health, please click here)

    Spending the time and investing in education can definitely make a difference especially working towards eliminating health disparity. I congratulate all our graduates and encourage them to continue their journey. It is truly worth it. As you can see, you will live longer, reduce your risk of chronic diseases and your children will live past their first year of life. For those of you looking for some advice for our high school graduates, please feel free to click on our previous blog titled, College Advice.

    I would also like to use this opportunity to thank those in the military and their family for the sacrifices that they make every day. We use Memorial Day to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Thank you.



    1. Linda K. Jackson says:

      I enjoy your blog SO VERY MUCH!!!!!!!!!! I’ve also shared an email, from your weekly blog, with many friends, in hopes that they’ll subscribe. I look forward to reading it each week! 🙂

      • Ngozi Osuagwu, MD says:

        Thank you for your kind comments. It is readers like you that inspire and motivate me to keep writing. Together we can work towards eliminating health disparity.

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