Friday, July 22, 2016 6:13 PM

Medical Careers in the Making

It's not often high school seniors get a real peek at what it's like to be a healthcare professional. But for 63 students who seized the opportunity at a six-week summer research and mentorship program as part of the UCSF Doctors Academy, their experience was "career-inspiring."

Dr. Katherine Flores, director of UCSF Fresno Latino Center for Medical Education and Research (LaCMER), started the program a decade ago to help encourage more students to become doctors in a region that has chronic shortages of physicians. And last night, Dr. Flores hosted the 2016 Doctors Academy Senior Research Symposium at the UCSF Fresno Medical Education and Research Center, recognizing the newest group of students and their mentors. 

This event recognized 63 high school seniors and their 80 mentors participating in the Doctors Academy. The event also featured a symposium where students presented the product of their research and mentorship to friends, families, and other healthcare professionals.

Of the all students in this Doctors Academy cohort, 24 were mentored by healthcare professionals from three of Community Medical Centers’ facilities. 

Twenty four students and their mentors of the UCSF Fresno Doctors Academy pose for a group photo during the Doctors Academy Senior Research Symposium. Of these students, 21 were mentored at Community Regional, 2 were at Community Health Center - Sierra and 1 was at Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital.

Also in attendance was a surprise guest: Dr. William Dominic, who was recognized for his continued mentorship even after surviving a critical bicycle accident last February.

The Doctors Academy is a partnership between the UCSF Fresno LaCMER and three local high schools: Caruthers, Selma, and Sunnyside. Seniors from these high schools are paired with and mentored by local healthcare professionals (doctors, nurses, physical therapists, etc.), shadowing them in their respective healthcare setting. The six-week mentorship program provides students with an immersive experience in healthcare occupations and makes them competitive applicants to colleges, universities and professional schools across the country.
Jose Frutis from Selma High School, mentored by Dr. Abaid Rahman of Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital, stands by his research presentation on “What strategies and resources can be used for improving medication adherence among patients.”

Kue Lee, MBA
Communications Specialist
Community Medical Centers