Imi Ho'ola "graduates" seven more aspiring physicians

UH Manoa program nurtures aspiring physicians from disadvantaged backgrounds

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Tina M Shelton, (808) 692-0897
Dir of Communications, Office of Dean of Medicine
Dr. Nanette Judd, (808) 692-1029
Executive Director, Imi Ho'ola, Native Hawaiian Health, JABSOM
Posted: Jun 4, 2010

Seven young people are about to take a big step forward in realizing their dreams of becoming a doctor—dreams they might not have been able to pursue without the Imi Ho‘ola Post-Baccalaureate Program.  Imi Ho‘ola, “Those Who Seek to Heal,” is now in its 35th year. It is one of UH Mānoa’s most successful efforts to promote diversity among physicians, to better serve the people of Hawai‘i and the Pacific.
The seven students who “graduate” from the program onFriday, June 4, have earned the privilege of becoming medical students at the John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM), when members of the incoming Class of 2014 begin their studies next month. The seven have completed what is sometimes referred to as “boot camp” for medical school: an intensive, 12-month course of study that has strengthened their knowledge in science and the humanities, and helped them overcome barriers to admission to medical school.
They are from O‘ahu, Hawai‘i Island, Kaua‘i and Guam. All are college graduates, with two having nursing degrees (UH Mānoa and UH Hilo) and three having master’s degrees in Microbiology or Physiology.
Since Imi Ho‘ola began, it has recruited 213 college graduates from socially, educationally or economically disadvantaged backgrounds.  They have gone on to become physicians, with impressive results:
  • 40 percent of “Imi Ho‘ola” graduates are Native Hawaiians.
  • 61 percent are now practicing medicine in Hawai‘i and the Pacific.
  • 73 percent are in the critical shortage field of primary care medicine.

Said program Executive Director Dr. Nanette Judd, “My greatest reward is witnessing the success of Imi Ho‘ola graduates who are now in practice in rural and underserved communities of Hawai‘i.”

JABSOM recently announced that, in the coming year, Imi Ho‘ola will expand to include more students. “We are very committed to providing more physicians to battle an ongoing physician shortage,” said Dr. Jerris Hedges, dean of JABSOM. “Imi Ho‘ola supports strengthening and diversifying the state’s physician work force.

The completion ceremony for Imi Ho‘ola begins at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, June 4, in the Medical Education Building Auditorium at JABSOM’s Kaka‘ako campus, 651 Ilalo Street.  For additional info about Imi Ho‘ola, see http://jabsom.Hawaiʻ


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