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White Plains Hospital Hosts Youth Summit for Medical Careers

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White Plains Hospital recently hosted New York State’s first Youth Summit in partnership with Black Men in White Coats, a national organization that seeks to increase the number of minorities in the field of medicine.

More than 200 middle and high school students, educators, physicians and community leaders attended the full-day summit that was held Saturday, October 22 at the Sonesta White Plains Downtown hotel.

“Our goal in partnering with Black Men in White Coats is to inspire Westchester’s young people of color and show them that a career in medicine is exciting, rewarding and also achievable,” said Master of Ceremonies Dean Akbar, Senior Director of Human Resources and Talent Development and Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee at White Plains Hospital. “Being it starts with seeing it, and a key theme we heard from our speakers is the vital part that relatable mentors and role models play in young people’s career development and aspirations.”

Following opening remarks from the Honorable Ben Boykin of the Westchester County Board of Legislators, as well as by Westchester County Executive George Latimer, Dr. Mill Etienne delivered the keynote address, sharing his experience in healthcare and the importance of representation in the field.

In breakout learning sessions, middle school and high school students participated in hands-on demonstrations, including Basic First Aid and CPR and “Stop the Bleed” training, while parents, educators and healthcare professionals attended a panel discussion, “How to Raise a Doctor,” offering perspectives from parents, medical professionals and students.

The afternoon included a talk entitled “A Day in the Life of an Emergency Medicine Physician,” delivered by Dr. Rondalph Taylor, Attending Emergency Physician at White Plains Hospital. The event closed with a panel discussion, “Black Men in White Coats,” focused on overcoming the barriers to increasing representation in healthcare.

“Our goal for every event is for the students and their parents to come away with an expanded view of the possibilities for their futures,” said Dr. Dale Okorodudu, Founder of Black Men in White Coats. “We were delighted to bring this inspiring program to New York for the first time through our partnership with White Plains Hospital and were overwhelmed by the community’s enthusiastic response.”

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