Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Egypt – CXXXVII. My Education – (13 of 13)

We were now ready to start our second year (really, the first year of Pharmacy). We were no longer in Giza; our closest neighbor was the largest hospital in Cairo, Kasr El Aini. Our former campus which we had come to love, was reluctantly left behind. (It made sense, though, to have the faculties of Medicine and Pharmacy near this hospital. In time it also proved beneficial; for instance, I was able to see many operations performed).

This year proved very demanding. It included Pharmacognosy (medicinal plants); Organic and Inorganic Chemistry; Materia Medica (Pharmacology); Dispensing (preparing medicines based on prescriptions provided by the professor); and finally, Anatomy and Physiology (but far less than what a med. student was required to know).

Exams were now made out of three parts: Written, Oral, and Practical (lab).

Two subjects required extra preparation, over and above the classroom and the lab.

For Pharmacognosy, we had to buy dried plants from a atar (a shop that sells medicinal plants and spices) and study them closely.

For anatomy, arrangements were made with the Faculty of Medicine that allowed us to attend dissections of cadavers. (However, dissection was not an exam requirement).

The question facing us was this: We were joining halfway through the year; would that be of any use to us? We were advised to divide the credits over a year and half. In my case, it worked very well, for by the following June (1956), I had passed all my subjects. I was ready to start my second year of Pharmacy in October 1956.

But a war intervened. By the end of October, the Suez War was upon us. By December 29, 1956, I had left Egypt with my family.

Normally, I would have graduated in 1958. However, only in 1972, 14 years later, in Canada, did I get a professional designation, and this time it was in Accounting (C.G.A.: Certified General Accountants).

* * *

Before I talk of the 1952 Revolution, the Suez War, and our eventual departure from Egypt, I am taking a pause to talk of a variety of topics; in many instances, they typify what life in Egypt was like.

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