Strength in numbers: Wayne Medicine for Women in Medicine groups – School of Medicine News
Each September, the American Medical Association Section of Women Physicians Celebrates Women in Medicine Month by honoring physicians who have volunteered their time, wisdom and support to advance women in their medical careers. Wayne State University School of Medicine is home to countless exceptional women in medicine and science – physicians, teachers, researchers, mentors and more. It is also home to several programs and organizations born with the intention of supporting and improving the health, leadership and education of women. While by no means an exhaustive list, here are a few organizations and interest groups focused on supporting women in medicine.
Created in 2008, Women in medicine and science, or WIMS, aims to advance women at all career levels within medicine and academic science by addressing gender equality, recruitment and retention, rewards and recognition, work balance- personal life and career advancement. WIMS holds events open to all faculty, staff and students interested in academic medicine and science. Several WIMS members collaborated to publish a study in February titled “Understanding the Impact of COVID-19 on Physician Moms” in the journal Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness. The study used social media and an online survey to assess the personal and professional experiences of 2,709 medical mothers during the coronavirus pandemic from April 27 to May 11, 2020, and the impact of the pandemic on the lives of mothers doctors.
The Faculty of Medicine is also home to a new student organization dedicated to female medical students and doctors juggling another full-time job at home – being a mother. Moms in Medicine was created earlier this year by 2024 medical student Zahra Alburkat.
Likewise, the American Association of Medical Women is an organization of physicians, medical students and others dedicated to serving as a unique voice for women’s health and the advancement of women in medicine. “As a student organization at Wayne State University School of Medicine, we are working to support not only the women in our school by providing mentorship opportunities, but also the women in our local community,” said Dana LaBuda, student. in medicine and member.
AMWA formed a partnership this year with the YWCA Interim House of Detroit, the only domestic violence shelter in the city of Detroit.
“As an organization, we have helped provide childcare services to those at the shelter, donated food, water and hygiene products, and from soon we will be offering tours of the shelter. well-being to improve access to medical care at the shelter. We have had over 50 volunteers over the past two months and have received great support from our medical students, ”added LaBuda.
On September 30, Charlotte Thill, AMWA Board Member, will take charge of the School of Medicine Instagram
Stories (@WayneMedicine) in honor of the last day of September as Women’s Medicine Month. Thill, a sophomore medical student, serves as the liaison between AMWA and WIMS, and co-hosts a podcast titled From skirts to scrubs with her friend Alesha Kotian. They use history and current affairs to understand what it means to be a woman in medicine and in their own lives.
Thill’s other medical students, Kristina Barrientos and Sara Saymuah, both of the 2023 class, started the Women in Surgery Interest Group this year in hopes of dispelling myths surrounding women in surgical specialties, as well as providing a network of support and mentorship to students at the WSU School of Medicine. They also hope to foster the community and provide perspectives and networking opportunities for women interested in surgery.
“We hope to dispel the myths surrounding women in a surgical career through outreach events, guest speaker series and mentorship,” said Barrientos.
Like women in surgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology Interest Group aims to provide medical students with exposure to a specific medical field. They also strive to teach patient advocacy to those who identify as women and to those in need of obstetrics and gynecology services.
For more information on any of these student organizations, visit studentaffairs.med.wayne.edu/student-orgs.
For more information on Women in Medicine and Science at the Faculty of Medicine, visit www.med.wayne.edu/wims.