The Tour for Diversity in Medicine will make DSU one of its six stops along the U.S. Northeast corridor – its only stop in Delaware – to promote medicine and dentistry as career possibilities on Thursday, Sept. 26.
Sponsored by Aetna, the Tour for Diversity conference will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in room 309 in the Bank of America Building on campus. More than 15 doctors, dentists and medical school students from across the country will come to DSU as part of the tour, which is designed to introduce medicine and dentistry as a field of advanced study and career path for minority students. 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.
The Sept. 26 event at DSU – which is free for all students – will involve a full-day session about the medical school application process, admissions tests, financial aid, interviewing skills and an overview of health disparities. Students interact one-on-one with mentors who will offer personal insights and share their experiences about how to build a successful career in medicine or dentistry.
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.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, Mass.
Garth Graham, M.D., M.P.H., president of the Aetna Foundation, noted, “As our nation’s population becomes increasingly diverse, we need to ensure that future health care providers reflect the racial and ethnic diversity that will help further positive health outcomes today and for future generations. As the Tour’s founding sponsor, we are pleased to offer our support to this innovative initiative that takes concrete steps to help under-represented minorities see a path forward to a career in medicine.”
The event is free for students. Registration is available at www.tour4diversity.org .
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