Stefanie Machado talks about this unique program

A day in the life

Stefanie Machado talks about this unique program


I always wondered what students in other programs do without all the information provided in our program.


Originally of Indian descent, I was born and raised in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.).  I made the decision to take a leap and go somewhere completely foreign to me. Having never been to Nova Scotia, Halifax has fulfilled all my expectations and more in giving me an exciting and unique university experience and allowing me the freedom to call it my second home.

I have always loved and had an interest in the pure sciences, especially in chemistry and biology (even though I was so bad at it!). When asked what I wanted to be, however, I always found myself wanting to help people, and to do something that would really make a difference, particularly for disadvantaged and underprivileged populations.  I mostly applied for general science degrees, hoping to do a master’s degree in epidemiology in the future. However, one Google search led me to the Health Promotion program page at Dalhousie University. When reading the description of the Health Promotion program I instantly knew it was the perfect fit for me!

What amazes me about health promotion is that it is so unique, and so different from any other discipline. I always wondered what students in other programs do without all the information provided in our program – it’s all so important in order to live a healthy life! Being a small program also allows everyone to build valuable relationships. There’s a sense of community within the Health Promotion program, which ironically is an important aspect of the discipline itself. The professors and students also have a special bond that I don’t see in other classes.

Living in Halifax and going to Dal for the past 3 years has changed me. I’ve been given so many opportunities, met such wonderful people and built relationships that I know will last a lifetime. I’ve learned so much about myself and my capabilities that I may not have been able to discover anywhere else in the world.  Today, as a third-year Health Promotion student at Dal, I have taken on the role of the 3rd year student representative of Health Promotion, as part of the Student Association of Health and Human Performance. In collaboration with the other Health Promotion student representatives, and the student program coordinator, we are hoping to establish an official Health Promotion Society – the first one ever at Dalhousie University.  I am currently also part of the Health Promotion Facebook Page launch, collaborating with other Health Promotion faculty members to increase awareness of our program.


I have a particular interest in Sexual Health Promotion and Education, and am hoping to conduct research in this area for my Honours project next year. I am also hoping to do my internship somewhere outside of Canada, perhaps Africa or Australia, in order to live yet another new and unique experience, while learning as much as I can about the different cultures that exist. In the future, I hope that I can somehow give back to the U.A.E. and India through my work as a health promoter, in a way that truly benefits the people. I hope to make a change wherever I end up, and in whatever I end up doing. I want to make a positive impact and change in the lives of those who need it the most.