The Tour for Diversity in Medicine will travel the Northeast corridor to introduce medicine and dentistry as a field of advanced study and career path to minority students from September 23-28, 2013. Along with Tour partner the Aetna Foundation, more than 15 doctors, dentists and medical school students from across the country will participate in the program, which will provide full-day, hands-on workshops to undergrad students in six states. For the first time, the Tour will also engage with high school students, in addition to college undergraduates, during the Tour’s final stop in Washington, D.C. The Tour will travel 400 miles over six days making six different stops at locations including two historically black colleges and universities. The participating medical professionals will hold conversations with hundreds of potential medical and dental professionals over the course of the week. The Tour for Diversity in Medicine’s mission is to help diversify the health care profession by giving minority students the advice and tools they will need to pursue medical careers. Although African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans compose more than 26 percent of the U.S. population, they represent only six percent of practicing physicians and five percent of dentists, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). In 2011, African-American and Hispanic students made up only 15 percent of all U.S. medical school applicants. 1 Yet research shows that patients who receive care from doctors of the same background are more satisfied with their care and more engaged in their treatment. “Our mission is to make a tangible difference in the lives of students and the broader community by offering the vision and real-world strategies to overcome barriers to address the need for greater diversity in the medical profession. Bridging the health-equity gap for under-represented minorities will only happen if our next generation is ready to meet the challenge,” said Alden Landry, M.D., co-founder of the Tour for Diversity in Medicine and an emergency department physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. “By reaching students early, even at the high school level, and engaging in face-to-face sessions with professionals who come from similar backgrounds, we hope to empower students to consider a career in medicine early on – and to imagine what’s possible for patients and their communities with a more diverse physician population.”
The week of September 23, the Tour for Diversity in Medicine will travel to:
- Monday, September 23 Aetna Headquarters, Hartford, Conn.
- Tuesday, September 24 Iona College, New Rochelle, N.Y.
- Wednesday, September 25 Rowan University, Glassboro, N.J.
- Thursday, September 26 Delaware State University, Dover, Del.
- Friday, September 27 Bowie State University, Bowie, Md.
- Saturday, September 28 Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, D.C.
The event is free for students. Registration is available at www.tour4diversity.org.Additional support for the Northeast tour comes from the U.S. Army, AAMC, American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, American Dental Education Association and the American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine. For more information, follow the Tour for Diversity in Medicine on www.Facebook.tourfordiversity and Twitter @Tour4Diversity or visit tour4diversity.org. About the Aetna Foundation The Aetna Foundation, Inc. is the independent charitable and philanthropic arm of Aetna Inc. Since 1980, Aetna and the Aetna Foundation have contributed more than $427 million in grants and sponsorships, including more than $14.6 million awarded in 2012. As a national health foundation, we promote wellness, health, and access to high-quality health care for everyone. This work is enhanced by the time and commitment of Aetna employees, who have volunteered four million hours since 2003. The Aetna Foundation’s current giving is focused on addressing the rising rate of adult and childhood obesity in the U.S.; promoting racial and ethnic equity in health and health care; and advancing integrated health care. For more information, visit www.aetnafoundation.org. About Tour for Diversity in Medicine The Tour for Diversity in Medicine (T4D), a project of Hip Hop Health Inc., seeks to educate, inspire and cultivate future physicians and dentists of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds by forming local connections in order to fulfill a national need. Conceived by former medical student leaders, T4D will bring premedical enrichment activities to underrepresented minority undergraduate students in order to assist with the diversification of the health professions workforce. T4D is a grassroots effort and has reached 1,400 students to date. This is the fourth Tour since T4D’s founding in 2012. Visit tour4diversity.org for more information. 1 Diversity in Medical Education: Facts & Figures 2012, The Association of American Medical Colleges