Three women, originally from the Congo, are connected by blood and also by their desire to help people. Mother, sister and aunt are all pursuing their Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) degrees at Winston-Salem State University.
It all started in 1992 when Emoba F. Pungu emigrated from the Democratic Republic of Congo, one of the poorest countries in Africa.
“Life was difficult for most families in Congo. To put bread on the table for kids was very stressful for most parents,” said Pungu. “You might be surprised to hear this, there are no middle-class families, you are either very rich or very poor.”
Her sister, Edith Pungu, came to the United States and enrolled at WSSU in 1995. She and her sister earned their Bachelor of Nursing (BSN) degrees in 2007.
“I’ve always wanted to be a nurse since a young age. I recall seeing nuns back home helping people and I would tell my parents, ‘When I grow up, I will be like them. I would like to work in a hospital and help the sick’,” Edith said. “I believe nursing runs in my family and truly is my passion.”
Emoba’s daughter, Amnazo Muhirwa, who came to the United States at age 8, followed in her mother and aunt’s footsteps. She earned her BSN in 2015.