KGI announces L.A. Care Scholars in Community Medicine Program
With the start of the 2021-2022 academic year right around the corner, Keck Graduate Institute’s (KGI) inaugural cohort of 22 students in the brand-new Master of Science in Community Medicine (MSCM) program—the first degree offered in KGI’s innovative School of Medicine—are about to begin their journeys toward becoming qualified health professionals.
Representing diversity in age, race, and gender, these students will be L.A. Care Scholars, thanks to a generous $5 million grant from L.A. Care Health Plan’s Elevating the Safety Net, an initiative to address a looming physician shortage in Los Angeles County.
“KGI’s School of Medicine has recruited a diverse group of scholars who will serve as a pipeline for physicians into the L.A. County safety net. Ultimately, they will help to advance health equity in communities that are currently underserved,” said John Baackes, L.A. Care CEO. “Our commitment is an exciting addition to our Elevating the Safety Net initiative, and we are honored to support this program.”
The MSCM program will prepare these L.A. Care Scholars in community medicine to become future healthcare providers. They will gain the skills necessary to engage hard-to-reach communities, foster strong positive relationships, and understand their health priorities. Additionally, these students will empower the communities where they serve to increase accessibility and utilization of quality health interventions and programming.
“I am incredibly grateful for L.A. Care’s generous scholarship, as it helps reduce the financial barriers on my path to medical school,” said L.A. Care Scholar Jessica Abrolat. “This scholarship allows my wife and I to live off a single income and enables me to fully invest myself in this master’s program without the burden of additional debt. I am so appreciative to be given this opportunity to be a part of the KGI MSCM program and I will pay this generosity forward through the rest of my future career in community medicine.”
All courses in the MSCM program will be taught online, and students will be able to work in their local communities during their capstone community experience. Many students in the MSCM program will continue to medical school or obtain healthcare positions within their communities immediately following graduation.
“It’s so important to train providers to truly address the needs of their patients, so patients feel their life is valued,” said Dr. Monique Williams, KGI’s MSCM Founding Program Director. “I’m excited that our inaugural class of L.A. Care Scholars will know their communities on a deeper level, allowing them to make a direct impact on the lives of patients.”
“I have seen the prevalence of health inequity on local, national, and global scales, and I wanted to be in a program that would help me to become a socially competent physician,” said L.A. Care Scholar Oluwatobi Theresa Uwe. “The MSCM program will expose me to different healthcare populations, so I am well-equipped to treat patients from various backgrounds.”
For a complete list of scholars go to claremont-courier.com and search for “KGI.”