Author: Jackman A, Gordey E, Dong K and Khera S Publication Year: 2013
Summary: Students from low-income backgrounds are currently under-represented in medical school. The aim of this study was to expose students in under-represented demographics to the field of medicine and encourage their interest in pursuing a medical career.
Description: Background: Students from low-income backgrounds are currently under-represented in medical school.

Aims: To expose students in under-represented demographics to the field of medicine and encourage their interest in pursuing a medical career. To determine the quantitative effects of the program on participants’ knowledge of and interest in a medical career, as well as the program’s impact on their self-confidence.

Methods: Medical students developed a week long day camp based on successful models, with a curriculum structured around five learning designs: lecture, small-group discussion, clinical skills, problem-based, and game-based. Thirty high-school students were nominated by their teachers to attend the program. Participants were surveyed before and after attending camp about their knowledge and interest in medicine as well as their self-confidence.

Results: Pre and post surveys showed a significant increase in participants’ knowledge (p < 0.001 to 0.001) and interest (p < 0.001 to 0.005) in medicine. Self-confidence was improved (p< 0.001), as measured with a validated self-concept tool.

Conclusions: Our findings support the short-term effectiveness of medical day-camp programs in increasing knowledge regarding and interest in the medical field in under-represented youth. The results also indicate that these programs increase participant self-confidence.

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