I sat down with Jade Johnson, the Coordinator of Diversity and Inclusion at Central Michigan University College of Medicine (CMED), to talk about current initiatives to further promote cultural competence on campus.
The United States is the most heavily incarcerated country in the developed world, and with that comes many secondary consequences, including children growing up with incarcerated parents. Although efforts have been made to mitigate the harm associated with having an incarcerated parent, few are focused on meeting the direct health needs of these children through preventative healthcare.
During our August delegation, we learned from Puerto Rican experts in their fields and acting first responders about implementing lasting social change since Hurricane María. Each expert’s lecture seemed to revolve around relief, recovery and resilience.
The health impacts associated with structural violence prevent vulnerable populations from gaining access to basic needs. This is due to injustices embedded within institutions and social structures that exist in today’s society.
On Wednesday, September 20, 2017, after an already uncharacteristically volatile hurricane season, Hurricane María made landfall on the island of Borikén (“Puerto Rico” in the indigenous Taíno language).
In 2006, India Arie released a self-empowering song called “I am not my hair.” For women of color, this song became an anthem that empowered and permitted a level of self-identity that challenged societal norms.
This past summer, I was fortunate enough to be an intern for the government relations arm of a national medical society. Below is an attempt at recreating a “Hill Day” so that you, the reader, can get a better idea of how policy is influenced.
Everyone says that medical school gets better, especially during third year. The traditional four-year curriculum covers the basic sciences in the classroom for the first two years. Then suddenly, third year plunges us into clinical rotations in the hospital, where we’ve all dreamed of working for so long.
She approached me and said, “Can I tell you something?” As we drifted slightly away from the cluster of white coats that I had previously stood with, she stated, “I just wanted to say that I’m so proud of you.”
We strive to identify as a generation of idealists. / We are politically aware, socially conscious young adults. / We place our collective purchasing power behind products with a social mission.
When I was six, a set of strawberry hair ties foiled my endeavor for independence. My mother had a way of twisting the plastic ornaments at the end of her operation so they sat together like two friends on a bus, neat and obedient at the crown of my head. Despite my assertions, (“I can do it myself!”) I could never align their orbits.
Certain events over the past few months and the recent election have revealed a lot of hurt and pain in our country. As future physicians, I believe we are called not only to care medically for our patients, but also to advocate for them. I do not know what the future may hold, but I do know that we can play our part in standing up for our communities and championing the rights of those who are marginalized. I hope we can strive to be medical students and physicians who are defined by empathetic care and healing.