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A Virtual National Diversity Mentoring Initiative to Promote Inclusion in Emergency Medicine.
Carrillo T, Rodriguez LM, Landry A, Alvarez A, Ceniza A, Gay R, Green A, Faiz J. A Virtual National Diversity Mentoring Initiative to Promote Inclusion in Emergency Medicine. The western journal of emergency medicine. 2023 Jul 12; 24(4):662-667.
Trainees underrepresented in medicine (URiM) face additional challenges seeking community in predominantly white academic spaces, as they juggle the effects of institutional, interpersonal, and internalized racism while undergoing medical training. To offer support and a space to share these unique experiences, mentorship for URiM trainees is essential. However, URiM trainees have limited access to mentorship from URiM faculty. To address this gap, we developed a national virtual mentoring program that paired URiM trainees interested in emergency medicine (EM) with experienced mentors.
We describe the implementation of a virtual Diversity Mentoring Initiative (DMI) geared toward supporting URiM trainees interested in EM. The program development involved 1) partnering of national EM organizations to obtain funding; (2) identifying a comprehensive platform to facilitate participant communication, artificial intelligence-enabled matching, and ongoing data collection; 3) focusing on targeted recruitment of URiM trainees; and (4) fostering regular leadership meeting cadence to customize the platform and optimize the mentorship experience.
We found that by using a virtual platform, the DMI enhanced the efficiency of mentor-mentee pairing, tailored matches based on participants' interests and the bandwidth of mentors, and successfully established cross-institutional connections to support the mentorship needs of URiM trainees.