Diversity Recruitment Scholarship
A committee of dedicated volunteers has worked to raise funds to establish a Diversity Recruitment Scholarship at IU School of Medicine. This fund is an important resource to attract the best students from underrepresented populations to IU School of Medicine. The permanent scholarship gives preference to native Hoosiers and special consideration to underrepresented populations, including those with diverse cultural backgrounds or who face significant financial challenges.
Importance of Diversity in Medicine
The health challenges in the black and Latino communities in Indiana are daunting. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports these populations lag behind in 70-plus categories. Chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease lead to more hospital admissions. Patients tend to take fewer steps to prevent breast, colorectal and cervical cancer. HIV infection rates and deaths tend to be higher. And, even now, infant mortality rates have worsened. Put simply, Indiana needs more doctors to serve patients from underrepresented backgrounds.
Three decades of research tells us if minority patients see doctors of their own race or background, they will visit more often, more readily accept a diagnosis and embrace treatment. They report higher satisfaction with their care and feel those doctors better listen to them. Offered the option, people prefer to see a doctor who understands them.
However, minority patients can’t always find a doctor like them. There is only one black doctor for every 3,222 black residents. Latinos face a worse disparity: Just one doctor for every 4,639 people living in Indiana. One clear solution: train more minority physicians.
The Diversity Recruitment Scholarship deepens the pool of funds from which IU School of Medicine can draw to remain competitive, allowing a student to make his or her choice based on fit and not finances. Through this scholarship, Indiana can retain its most talented students and train more physicians who may consider a career caring for underserved populations. Donations of any amount are very much appreciated.