Strengthening & Healing Communities Premedical Student Conference Welcomes Students Considering Career in Medicine

Last weekend, 64 college students and recent graduates across the New York City area attended Strengthening and Healing Communities, a premedical conference featuring Weill Cornell medical students, faculty, and staff. This exciting annual event, with an emphasis on health equity, is sponsored by the Weill Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine Diversity Center of Excellence, and Cornell Center for Health Equity. Topics included details on how to apply to medical school, financing medical school, optimizing mentoring experiences, research careers in medicine, advocacy in medicine, anatomy lab experience, and poster presentations.

“The journey toward a career in medicine can be complex, so to make the path truly accessible is vital,” said Dr. Susana Morales, Director of the Diversity Center of Excellence, Vice Chair for Diversity and Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine in the division of General Internal Medicine. “There is also a great need for doctors to be better equipped to work with a diverse range of patients, as well as a need to address the many issues facing us in the decades ahead.”

The all-day event, which was free of cost, required pre-registration. It featured keynote speaker Dr. Anton G. Kelly, an attending surgeon and Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Division of Trauma, Burns, Critical and Acute Care at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. Dr. Kelly discussed his path to medical school and his current career, including the barriers he faced as well as the experiences and mentorship that shape his commitment to optimizing culturally sensitive, interconnected clinical care.

The Premedical Initiatives arm of the Diversity Center of Excellence looks forward to this summer’s upcoming health conference in collaboration with the Fordham University STEP program and the resuming of the Dining with Doctors series for premedical and pre-health college students this fall. The Center also looks forward to the new cycle of Mentoring Cascade in the upcoming academic year.


Dr. Susana Morales, Vice Chair for Diversity and Diversity Center for Excellence director, stands with medical student, Chase C. Alston, center, and conference attendees.


Dr. Andrea Card, the Diversity Center of Excellence’s Faculty Lead for Pre-Medical Diversity Initiatives, addresses the crowd.