Youth Community Programs

Photo: Group of people with blue gloves on.At UVA’s School of Medicine, we focus on outreach, scholarship, and education that can be a valuable resource for developing diversity and cultural competency in academic medicine. Not only does this focus address issues such as eradicating health care disparities, providing services to the community, and re-shaping the legacy of the University in regard to diverse communities, it also helps build diversity into the next generation of health professionals. Education and awareness programs in elementary schools, middle schools, and high schools, are powerful influences on career aspirations.

Community Outreach Goals 

Photo: Group of people at UVA School of Medicine A. Integrate the Center on Health Disparities and the School of Medicine Committee on Women under the auspices of the Diversity Inclusion Steering Committee to better leverage resources and sharpen the focus of these strategic outreach and scholarship initiatives

B. Utilize the Center on Health Disparities to develop programs and partnerships that provide opportunities for students, faculty, and staff in the SOM to improve access to care and increase engagement in the health and welfare of diverse communities locally, regionally, and nationally

C. Leverage existing outreach, service and educational activities across the School and Grounds related to diversity and inclusion to reduce redundancy, ensure consistent branding, provide resources as necessary, and raise awareness

D. Develop consistent partnerships with local schools to create learning and awareness programs aimed at shaping career aspirations and creating an affinity for the university

E. Develop community partnerships to identify formal and informal support services and resources that can be used in making the community at large more attractive for diverse groups

F. Engage in scholarship and research related to diversity and inclusion that fosters collaboration with other academic medical institutions and allows for the sharing of best practicesPhoto: Group of people at UVA School of Medicine.

G. Utilize the Committee on Women in developing programs and partnerships that provide opportunities for improved academic advancement and career success for women faculty, students and staff

H. Advocate for polices that support customized career paths for all faculty allowing those with competing personal and professional demands to remain engaged, productive and supported during periods of diminished availability for professional activities

I. Engage in research and scholarship related to the career trajectory for women in medicine with a focus on the advancement of women to major institutional, regional and national roles

Community Outreach Strategies Photo: Group of people at UVA School of Medicine.

1. Gain a better understanding of the context and vision for the Center on Health Disparities and leverage its resources to better align with the focus of the Diversity Plan and the Strategic Plan for the School of Medicine

2. Create an inclusive clinical service, learning, and research environment that results in a better understanding of existing barriers to care and serves as a catalyst for pragmatic interventions

3. Identify sites for outreach to underserved populations

4. Incorporate learning focused on unconscious bias in diagnosis and treatment into healthcare team trainingPhoto: Group of people at UVA School of Medicine.

5. Focus on clinical site development with attention to cultural needs of population served

6. Identify the activities occurring within the School related diversity and inclusion so that these activities can be highlighted, best practices shared, and collaborations encouraged

7. Collaborate with the University’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion to identify community resources and opportunities for partnership to support both educational programs and services that would benefit diversity and inclusion

8. Optimize existing relationships with local schools and community colleges by developing partnerships and sponsorship of clubs and associations related to health sciences

9. Create internships and summer research experiences focused on health sciences for high school and undergraduate students from groups underrepresented in medicine

Photo: Group of people on UVA Hospital Helipad.10. Review the structure and function of the Committee on Women realigning and expanding resources to provide ongoing, regular opportunities for women faculty to receive peer support and institutional career mentorship

11. Create policies related to flexible work schedules and customized career paths with a goal of retaining faculty by diminishing workload and career pace during periods of accelerated personal demands with a short term goal of retaining these faculty and a long term goal of allowing them to return to full engagement in their professional work

12. Utilize internal and external satisfaction and engagement data for program planning, policy adaptation, national presentation, and peer-reviewed publications