PCOM MATH AND SCIENCE SUMMER ACADEMY
Despite being the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population, Hispanics only account for about 4 percent of practicing physicians, according to a study by the Association of American Medical Colleges. This illustrates a clear need for more doctors of Hispanic origin, as research shows that minority patients are far more likely to receive care from physicians of similar ethnic background.
The PCOM Math and Science Summer Academy, an intensive, two-week program, designed to provide a pipeline that routes motivated students with an interest in STEM+M toward four-year degree programs and into training for the health professions. The academy is a partnership between Esperanza College, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM), and ASPIRA Inc. of Pennsylvania Schools.
The camp will be led by PCOM students, alumni, and faculty. In addition, students in the Academy will have the chance to broaden their horizons through field trips to institutions such as the Franklin Institute and will hear from healthcare leaders from various specialties and ethnic backgrounds. Students will spend one day at Esperanza College learning about a day in the life of a college student. PCOM staff will discuss the medical school admissions process and provide career advice.
“Because there is such a lack of practicing physicians and providers who are Hispanic, many students who might have an interest in the STEM+M areas simply don’t have any exposure to those areas, or feel those careers are not an option,” said Lisa McBride, PhD, former chief diversity officer at PCOM. “We want to inundate these students with science in every aspect of their lives—from the academic to the social, to the cultural—to show them that a career in the health professions can be an attainable goal.”