By Kimberly Lawson
On Wednesday, June 28th Dr. Elizabeth Ofili of the NRMN Research Resources and Outreach Core (RROC) presented at The Empower2 Conference, hosted by Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science, Howard University, Meharry Medical College, and Morehouse School of Medicine. The Empower2 Conference took place June 26–28, 2017 at the Cal Turner Family Center at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, TN. The conference attendees included HBCU Presidents, undergraduates, Academic Deans, Pre-Health Advisors, Curriculum Specialists, Basic Science Faculty and Chairs. There were 64 institutional leaders at the HBCU Empower2 Conference within the category of Presidents, Deans/VPs/Provosts.
The two-day conference focused on developing students academically for entry into medical and graduate school for health professions. The initiative also highlighted the opportunity to leverage this workforce development strategy to influence healthcare, training, and education and create an alliance between HBCUs and those who train minority students. General sessions with renowned education authorities provided updates on the current political climate and other factors that provide unprecedented opportunities for HBCUs to find solutions to these challenges.
The interactive NRMN session hosted by Dr. Ofili introduced conference attendees to NRMN resources for faculty and staff development and to support undergraduate students in achieving success toward careers in the health sciences and STEM careers. The session’s objectives were to:
- Provide an overview of NRMN resources available to undergrad students and their mentors
- Introduce NRMN MyMentor virtual mentorships platform and how it helps students to connect with mentors around the U.S.
- Demonstrate NRMNet undergraduate resources and the MyMentor program
The last day of the conference concluded with participating schools and working groups attending sessions to examine recommendations from their institutions and the previous conference on best practices.