Aziza Cooke mixes literature and medicine to make a difference

Two years ago Aziza Cooke decided to share what would have been years of pouring her heart out in poetry, and has been touching the hearts of her readers. Making a difference in the world, whether through poetry or medicine is what the final year Texila University student sees herself doing.

“Writing poems started around the time I was in seventh grade. My father, an English teacher, pushed me to write poems as a way of dealing with whatever teenage issues I was facing at the time,” she shared. Her challenges, she added, may have stemmed from feeling like an outsider after the family moved to the Bahamas. She had just completed fourth grade at St Agnes Primary School when she and her family moved to Inagua in the Bahamas. “Inagua is what you consider a family island so everybody literally knows everybody. So as the new girl I spent it reading and preferred to wear my skirts at the ankle. I didn’t fit in at first; I spent a lot of my time indoors reading or sleeping. I loved reading Robinson Crusoe and other adventurous novels,” she recalled.

By the time Aziza was in eighth grade the Science lab at her school was turned into an Art room and she delved into art, drawing and painting. Her favourite subjects were English Literature, Art and Science. The medical student turned up her nose at the mention of Mathematics. She mentioned that she could never wrap her head around the subject and although she tried with the subject she didn’t try hard enough not realizing at the time that Math played a vital role in medicine. She later learnt how much it did when she began her pharmacology course at Texila. “… I was like, what is this, why are there so many calculations? But I’ve been trying with it; not my favourite thing, definitely not. However, I passed the course but it was during this particular course that I spent a lot of my time writing and drawing. If you saw my notebooks you’d see places where I was working then there would be a page where I’d have a poem or picture I started drawing during the class. The lecturer would always point me out in class because I was always doing something other than paying attention to her,” Aziza chuckled…..

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