“As a child, I believe I was probably too serious for life — too focused,” Dr. Emmanuel Wegoye shared with us with a subtle smile in his eye. “I loved ambition. I knew I wanted to be a doctor by 14 and worked towards that.” And, by the grace of God, these early dreams have come to fruition. For the last year, Dr. Wegoye has served as the medical director of CURE Uganda, but this is far from his first experience with CURE.
Dr. Wegoye first encountered CURE when he was in his fourth year of medical school. He had a friend working at CURE Uganda. Dr. Wegoye visited his friend, and he remembers, “I was intrigued by the service and the (work) family I found here.” By 2008, Dr. Wegoye had graduated medical school and found himself back at CURE Uganda serving as a medical officer. His daily duties included tasks like monitoring the children on the ward, taking medical histories in the outpatient clinic, and running mobile clinics around the country. They were rather basic tasks but served to stoke the fires of Dr. Wegoye’s intrigue.
Dr. Wegoye’s ambitions ran higher than the work of a medical officer, and he soon earned a CURE scholarship to study neurosurgery in Cape Town, South Africa. “Most doctors who have gone through CURE Uganda as medical officers and have had an interest in pursuing a career in neurosurgery, by God’s grace, CURE has found a way of supporting them,” Dr. Wegoye explains. It was a grueling, five and half year course of study, but in 2017, Dr. Wegoye graduated as a full-fledged neurosurgeon with a specialty in pediatric neurosurgery.
After his graduation, Dr. Wegoye’s first post was running the neurosurgery department in a children’s hospital in Kenya. He served there for two years before he was called to serve as a pediatric neurosurgeon back at the CURE Children’s Hospital of Uganda. One year later, Dr. Wegoye accepted the position of CURE Uganda’s Medical Director. “(Being) a neurosurgeon is a calling, and I believe leadership is also a calling,” Dr. Wegoye said. Despite the trappings of power and prestige, Dr. Wegoye firmly sees his role as one of service. He remembers his time as a medical officer in this very hospital and takes his service to both the children and the next generation of neurosurgeons very seriously.
When it all comes down to it though, the surgeries, the training, everything is secondary to Dr. Wegoye’s primary purpose. “My greatest conviction is the ministry to our heavenly Father…Of all things in life you can do, if it is to serve God, it is the greatest,” he tells us.