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The American Heart Association, the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on longer, healthier lives for all, is committed to addressing the lack of diversity and Hispanic inclusion in healthcare careers. As such, the AHA has announced that 30 students from across the United States and Puerto Rico have been selected to participate in the 2022-2023 Hispanic Serving Institution Scholars Program that begins in September.
Collectively, these students are enrolled in public health- and healthcare-focused programs at 18 universities in California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, and Texas. They will each be paired with a volunteer mentor who is either a healthcare professional or is currently performing their own relevant scientific research. Scholars and mentors will develop and present a research project addressing basic, clinical, and education science. Each scholar will receive a stipend and they will participate in professional development workshops that will benefit them as they continue their education and enter the workforce.
“Overall, this program was amazing. I got to network with many bright scholars (and) learned valuable skills that I will use in my life. It was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity for me. I will always cherish this experience,” said Irvin Solano, 2021 HSI Scholar.
Highlights of this program will include travel to attend the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2022, the premier global event focusing on improving health by championing scientific discovery and practice-changing educational content, in Chicago in November, and a spring symposium in April, when scholars will present posters of the research they conducted throughout the program year.
“The scholars and mentors in the Hispanic Serving Institutions Scholars program are helping improve cultural sensitivity in clinical practice and transform science and research to be more inclusive. As champions for health care quality and access for all, the American Heart Association is committed to empowering the next generation of research and health care professionals by providing undergraduate students with academic and career-enriching resources, including scholarships and mentoring,” said Michelle A. Albert, M.D., M.P.H., FAHA, volunteer president of the American Heart Association, 2022-23, Walter A. Haas-Lucie Stern endowed chair in Cardiology, professor of medicine at the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), admissions dean for UCSF Medical School and director of the UCSF Center for the Study of Adversity and Cardiovascular Disease (NURTURE Center).
Now in its second year, the program is funded by a financial grant from Quest Diagnostics as part of its Quest for Health Equity (Q4HE) initiative, focused on addressing healthcare disparities that impact underserved communities across the U.S. Quest Diagnostics also supports the American Heart Association’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Scholars Program.
“We are proud to collaborate with the American Heart Association to expand research and mentorship opportunities for HSI Scholars,” said Ruth Clements, president of the Quest Diagnostics Foundation. “This program is helping to shape the future healthcare leaders who will diversify the industry, address inequities and help improve patient outcomes in meaningful ways.”
The 2022-2023 participating colleges and universities are below.
* California State University- Dominguez Hills
* California State University-Long Beach
* Florida International University
* Miami Dade College
* City Colleges of Chicago-Wilbur Wright College
* William Paterson University
* Montclair State University
* City University of New York -CUNY
* Hostos Community College
* University of Puerto Rico- Rio Piedras Science Medical School
* University of Puerto Rico- Mayaguez
* University of Puerto Rico-Carolina
* University Interamericana- Barranquitas
* University Interamericana-Arecibo
* University of Puerto Rico-Fajardo
* University of Houston
* University of Houston Downtown
Since 1992, the U.S. Department of Education has designated institutions with at least 25% Hispanic enrolled students as Hispanic Serving Institutions.
Learn more about the Hispanic Serving Institution Scholars program and the scholars who participated in the first cohort on the Millennial Women Talk podcast, hosted by sisters Stephanie and Melissa Carcahe. The podcast profiles the participating students, as well as medical professionals and thought leaders who discuss a variety of topics related to health and wellbeing in the Latino community. Episode 1 of the HSI Scholars program series can be downloaded where podcasts are available, and at HSI Scholars – YouTube.