PROFESSOR SYLVIA GEORGE AKPAN
First female medical doctor
Sylvia George (Essien) Akpan is a retired Professor of Anaesthesiology of the University of Calabar, Cross River State is a woman of many firsts. This native of Ikot Obong Ediong, Ikot Ekpene, is the first female medical doctor from present Akwa Ibom State and the first female professor of anaesthesiology from the region.
Prof. Akpan is a proud Holy Child Alumni having attended the St. Joseph Infant and Primary School- Ifuho, Cornelia Cornelly College (CCC) – Uyo, Layton Hill Convent- Blackpool, England; schools run by the Society of the Holy Child Jesus.
Sylvia G. Akpan graduated MD (Hons)from the University of Modena – Italy in 1968 and was appointed Professor in 2003. She has held several academic positions including Head of Department, Chairman of Faculty, Chief Examiner, and Internal Assessor for Fellowship Examinations.
Professor Sylvia Akpan over the years has been recognised for her discreet and special attraction to people in need. This attraction is traced back to her visits to the Pacelli School for the Blind in the ‘70s, from which grew a relationship that endeared her to Rev. Sr. Assumpta Okereke HHCJ for life. She, though deliberate in her efforts to avoid any publicity has been known to voluntarily sponsor surgeries including cases of victims of acid attacks, corrective limbs and prosthesis (artificial limb) for indigent individuals.
As the President of St. Vincent Society, the Good Samaritan Home in Calabar was her most regular charity. Other known charities include the Mapro Football Children (St. Patrick’s Society) – Turkana, Kenya, St. Louise Special School, and the St. Vincent Community – Ikot Ekpene. She has been discovered to have a special maternal and supporting relationship with a promising and determined personality who has been bedridden since 1997.
Professor S.G. Akpan was recognised by the Catholic Women Organisation of Calabar Arcdiocese in 2010 and given the “Eti Eka” Award.
Akwa Ibom Celebrates Prof Sylvia Akpan who’s motto, ‘Give L.I.F.E. (Love, Inspiration, Faith, And Encouragement)’ resonates with the essential Akwa Ibom spirit.