Lin Qiaozhi:Guardian Angel of Mothers, Babies
Lin Qiaozhi, a specialist in women’s diseases, lived from 1901 to 1983. She had devoted her whole life to helping women of China, especially women in the countryside.
She was born in Gulangyu, a small island commonly referred to as a garden on the sea, in Fujian Province. When she was five years old, her mother died of cervical cancer. Sin
ce then, she realized the sadness that women's illnesses could bring to their families, and the influence that women's health could have on their children.
Lin was brought up by her brother. Though his family was poor, they offered her a chance to get a good education. In the summer of 1920, when Lin was 18 and after she had graduated from Xiamen Women's Teacher-training School, she reached the crossroads in her life: She had to decide whether to study abroad or get married and continue to study at home.
She knew about the first-class medical school of Asia, the Union Medical University based in Peking, which was sponsored by the US-based Rockefeller Foundation. she was attracted to the school by its full range of courses, advanced equipment, excellent faculty and, most especially, its high academic standards. Lin decided to take the school's entrance examination.
During the exam, held in Shanghai, a prospective student, who had been Lin's classmate, lost consciousness as a result of heatstroke and nervousness. Lin stopped writing the exam to help. Assisted by another classmate, Lin carried the unconscious person to a cool place, unbuttoned her stud and placed a cold towel on her forehead. Lin also called the victim's sister, who was in Shanghai. Two weeks later, She enrolled in the school. Her high score on the exam, her fluent English and her ability to cope with emergencies had impressed the examiners.
Lin was a diligent student. However, her father died from a cerebral hemorrhage in the fifth year, and left her very little money. Lin thought about quitting school until her oldest brother and sister-in-law offered her financial support. Eight years of hard work paid off: Lin received the Wenhai Scholarship, the highest prize awarded to one of the university's graduates.
In the summer of 1929, Lin was filled with joy—she was the first woman hired as a resident physician at Union Hospital's Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, which is what she had hoped for. She always carried a small notebook, in which to make notes and refer to medical information. After six months, she was named chief resident physician. That was a remarkable accomplishment, as it generally took at least four years for someone to reach that position.
Due to her outstanding work, Lin’s employer sent her, in July 1932, to study at medical schools in Manchester and London, in the United Kingdom. The following year, her employer sent her to Vienna, Austria, to study.