Students, parents, educators, community leaders and healthcare professionals gathered for hands-on learning, networking, and mentorship opportunities
White Plains, N.Y. – (October 26, 2022) – White Plains Hospital 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 black and brown individuals in the field of medicine. The full-day summit was held on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at the Sonesta White Plains Downtown hotel.
More than 200 middle and high school students, educators, parents, physicians, and community leaders attended the day of hands-on activities, educational panels, and networking with healthcare professionals from diverse backgrounds, all with the mission of helping young people discover the opportunities available to them in healthcare.
“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. Dr. Etienne serves as Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, and Associate Professor of Neurology and Medicine at New York Medical College.
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. In addition, during lunch, students were seated with mentors in the healthcare field, including several medical students from Albert Einstein College of Medicine and physicians from Montefiore Medical Center.
“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.”
About White Plains Hospital: White Plains Hospital is a proud member of the Montefiore Health System, serving as its tertiary hub of advanced care in the Hudson Valley. The Hospital is a 292-bed not-for-profit health care organization with the primary mission of providing exceptional acute and preventive medical care to all people who live in, work in or visit Westchester County and its surrounding areas. Centers of Excellence include the Center for Cancer Care and The William & Sylvia Silberstein Neonatal & Maternity Center. The Hospital’s Flanzer Emergency Department is the busiest in Westchester County. White Plains Hospital performs lifesaving emergency and elective angioplasty in its Joan and Alan Herfort, MD, Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory and Marie Promuto Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory and in 2021, the Hospital formally launched its cardiac surgery program with its first-ever open-heart surgery in partnership with world-class cardiac surgeons from Montefiore Einstein. White Plains Hospital has outpatient medical facilities across Westchester, including multispecialty practices in Armonk, New Rochelle, Somers and Yorktown Heights; and Scarsdale Medical Group locations in Harrison and Scarsdale.