Young Physicians and Dentists Advise and Inspire Minority Students Interested in Health Careers
The Tour for Diversity in Medicine, a volunteer initiative developed by two young physicians to educate, inspire and cultivate the next generation of minorities in medicine, dentistry, and pharmacy, will visit the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) Thursday, February 11 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the STEM Academy and Conference Center. A gifted group of 11 doctors, dentists, pre-health advisors and medical school students from across the country will provide free interactive workshops to local high school and college students. With support from the U.S. Army Medical Recruiting Brigade, the Tour for Diversity in Medicine aims to help diversify the health care profession by equipping minority students with tools, resources, and advice as they pursue medical careers. Registration for the event is $5 per student.
Although African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans comprise more than 31.5 percent of the U.S. population, they represent only 8.9 percent of practicing physicians and five percent of dentists, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). Research shows that patients who receive care from doctors of the same background are more satisfied and engaged in their care.
“As health professionals, we all begin from the same place. The difference is the amount of support and resources you have access to,” said Alden Landry, M.D., MPH, cofounder of the Tour for Diversity in Medicine and an emergency medicine physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. “The Tour connects us to students who are at the very beginning stages of a path to medicine. We’re here to motivate future minority physicians and equip them with helpful tools.”
Each stop on the Tour offers participating students insight into the application process, admissions test, financial aid, interviewing skills, and an overview of health disparities through daylong sessions with Tour Mentors. Students also have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with Tour Mentors to gain additional advice and understanding on how to build successful careers. Motivating Pathways, the parent organization for the Tour for Diversity in Medicine is also pleased to announce the launch of its new initiative, the Motivating Pathways Speakers Bureau. In conjunction with the Tour’s premedical enrichment activities, the Speakers Bureau offers Tour Mentors and other experts in workplace diversity, cultural competency, academic and community leadership, mentoring and career development to organizations, institutions, and other parties interested in learning from both evidence based practice and hands-on experience.
“The Speakers Bureau is designed to foster open dialogue about important topics that focus on improving patient care and reducing healthcare disparities,” said Kameron Matthews, M.D., J.D., cofounder of the Tour for Diversity in Medicine and Chief Medical Officer of the Mile Square Health Center at the University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System in Chicago. “As leaders in their communities and professions, our Experts will provide knowledgeable insight on some of the most critical issues of the health profession.”
Additional support for the Tour comes from AAMC, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, and the American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine. Online registration is now available at tour4diversity.org. In addition to in person mentoring and live events, The Tour for Diversity in Medicine keeps students engaged at tour4diversity.org with the “Voices of Diversity” blog, interactive webinars and educational videos.
To register for the event, visit www.tour4diversity.org .