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SLU School of Medicine Recruits for Summer Scholars Program

by Bridjes O'Neil on 05/25/2021
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Bridjes O'Neil
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Saint Louis University’s School of Medicine Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) is recruiting students for its Summer Scholars Program. Program Director Javonda Quinn said the program exposes incoming 9-12 grade students to careers in medicine or health care.

“We hope to pique their interest to look at these career paths as options,” Quinn said.


Summer Scholar Program students participate in a hands-on lab demonstration. SLU file photo. 

During the three-week program, students will meet a variety of physicians and health care professionals. Some of the specialties may include family medicine, pediatrics, transplant surgery, pathology, dietetics, and nursing. In the past, the program has included ACT prep, tours of SLU’s campus, community service opportunities, and participation in an anatomy demonstration. SLU offers students a wide range of experiences thanks to the University's schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Health Sciences.

The School of Medicine has hosted the program for more than 10 years. Daniel Blash, Ph.D., vice dean of diversity, equity and inclusion​ and chief diversity officer at SLU’s School of Medicine​, said the program was designed to reach minority students who were underrepresented in medicine and health care. Now, Blash says his office is running two sessions, including one at no cost for students from low-income families. 

This year, the first session will run from June 7 – June 25 and the second session will run from June 14-July 2. The first session, which will be conducted both virtually and in person, accommodates up to 25 students and costs $250. The first session is at capacity and no longer accepting applications. The second session is fully in person and capped at 15 students. The deadline to apply for the second session is Monday, May 31. 

Eligible students must have at least a 2.5 G.P.A., submit an application, write an essay, and obtain a letter of recommendation from a science teacher or school counselor. Quinn said some required documents will be waived if students are unable to obtain them before orientation which will be held on Friday, June 11.  Parents, guardians, and students interested in applying for the second session of the Summer Scholars Program are highly encouraged to attend orientation. Due to COVID-19 social distancing requirements, Quinn said only one parent or guardian may accompany the student to the event.

For more information, contact Javonda Quinn at or 314-977-7564.

Saint Louis University School of Medicine

Established in 1836, Saint Louis University School of Medicine has the distinction of awarding the first medical degree west of the Mississippi River. The school educates physicians and biomedical scientists, conducts medical research, and provides health care on a local, national and international level. Research at the school seeks new cures and treatments in five key areas: cancer, liver disease, heart/lung disease, aging and brain disease, and infectious diseases.