Left to right, Felisha Gonzalez, community and advocacy chair; Jonathan Alhalel, co-president and treasurer; Nicolas Francone, co-president; Evan Panken, resident and faculty chair; Denise Monti, social and communications chair
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At its core, the Latino Medical Student Association (LMSA) focuses on providing a supportive and educative environment for Latino medical students at Feinberg, and educating the general Feinberg community about Latino health issues in Chicago and providing advocacy, volunteer, and research opportunities. To that end, we’ve hosted and participated in a variety of events. In January, LMSA hosted Dr. Frank Castillo, MD, a family practice physician at Erie Health Clinics in Humboldt Park. Dr. Castillo spoke at length about his path to medicine, his challenges as a Latino physician in medical school and practice, and his experience being a primary care provider to a majority Latino and Spanish-speaking community. We also hosted Dr. Juan Carlos Caicedo, MD, a transplant surgeon at Northwestern Medicine who is involved in research and advocacy for Hispanic transplant patients through the NMH Hispanic Transplant program. Dr. Caicedo spoke about issues of providing culturally sensitive care to the Latino community and about his path to transplant surgery.
LMSA has also been involved in community service projects throughout Chicago, bringing medical students to various communities throughout Chicago to learn and serve. In April, five of us gave a presentation to high achieving minority students at Crane College Prep High School about our experiences in college and our pathways to medical school. In August, LMSA members volunteered at a public health screening in the Little Village neighborhood, along with University of Chicago LMSA members. There, we aided in Spanish translation, helped provide diabetes management education, and learned about this wonderful neighborhood.
Northwestern LMSA is a part of the national LMSA organization, and in past years have been involved in both regional and national leadership and advocacy. We attended the LMSA national conference at Case Western University in April and had the opportunity to interact with college students, medical students, residents and faculty from medical schools around the world. We also attended workshops on Latino health issues, and learned from other chapters about how to create a strong Latino community at Feinberg.
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