WellSpan Health hosts more than 300 students and caregivers for Black Men in White Coats Youth Summit

Annual event provides mentorship and career pathway exploration

York, Pa., May 20, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Area students engaged in a full day of career exploration and networking this weekend as WellSpan Health partnered with York College to host the 2nd annual Black Men in White Coats Youth Summit. More than 300 students and caregivers networked with role models at the event, part of a continued effort to improve the health of South Central Pennsylvania communities by laying the foundation for success for area youth. Students of all genders and races were invited to attend.  

“We need to look no further than our own communities for our future healthcare professionals and this youth summit ensures that anyone who has an interest in this career path has support in doing so,” said Kim Brister, vice president and chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer. “At WellSpan, we believe in the power of diversity, and the importance of offering programs and an inclusive culture in which every person feels welcomed, respected, and valued.”

"We are thrilled to partner with WellSpan Health to host the Black Men in White Coats Youth Summit on our campus. We share in the mission of introducing young minds to all that is possible – in education, healthcare and in greater service to our community,” said Dr. Emmanuel B. John, Dean of the Myers School of Nursing and Health Professions

The interactive, hands-on activities offered at the event to students in grades 6-12 showcased the numerous career possibilities within healthcare and encouraged them to consider a career in healthcare by introducing the practical aspects of healthcare professions and real people who look just like them.

This year’s keynote speaker was Damien Myers, MD, MPH, who left clinical medicine in 2010 to teach and cultivate the next generation of Black health professionals. In the process he founded MedReimagined, a Baltimore-based program aimed at inspiring the minds of young people through his own experiences and empowering students to consider becoming physicians.

“For more than a decade, I’ve taught hundreds of aspiring medical professionals and a half dozen MDs. But we need a better way. There are 55,000 missing Black doctors,” he shared.

The event also featured information sessions for parents, caregivers and adult attendees aimed at supporting individuals on career pathways in addition to expert financial advice in paying for college.

WellSpan has been intentional in supporting diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives and programs and has been recognized for this effort by Newsweek and Training Apex, among others. To continue to be a health care provider and employer of choice, WellSpan has made great strides to support an inclusive culture in which every person feels welcomed, respected, and valued. By being more inclusive, the health system can deliver patient-focused, seamless, high-quality care for patients.

WellSpan’s Black Men In White Coats Youth Summit was sponsored by the WellSpan York Health Foundation Kids First Committee, Foundation of the Pennsylvania Medical Society, Pennsylvania Medical Society Health Diversity Task Force and York College of Pennsylvania.


Hands-on demonstration Hands-on demonstration

Contact Data