Female High School and Medical Students Take Part in “Perry Initiative Outreach Program” at Orthopaedic Institute for Children
Female high school and medical students interested in pursuing careers in medicine and engineering will receive a boost to their professional aspirations by being part of a very special “hands-on” program conducted Sept. 27-28 at Orthopaedic Institute for Children’s downtown Los Angeles campus. The event is part of the nationally acclaimed Perry Initiative Outreach Program, which works to inspire young women to be leaders in these fields and to foster their understanding of and appreciation for the career that may lie ahead.
The Medical Student Outreach Program (MSOP) attracts women in their first or second year of medical school who are undecided about specialty choice or have expressed interest in exploring a career in orthopaedics. Approximately 45 participants at the Friday event will hear lectures from local women surgeons, network with industry leaders, and perform hands-on skills modules and mock orthopaedic surgeries.
The following day 40 young women from high schools (grades 10 and above) will attend a one-day program where they hear from women leaders in the fields of medicine and engineering and receive hands-on experience by performing mock orthopaedic surgeries and biomechanics exercises.
“Since its founding in 2009, the Perry Initiative Outreach Program has touched more than 10,000 students nationwide; and we are honored to once again be the Los Angeles host site for this prestigious program,” said Jennifer Beck, M.D., director of outreach and research at OIC’s acclaimed Center for Sports Medicine. “It is always invigorating to see the excitement on the faces of the attendees, and we hope that this event helps inspire them to pursue these important career paths.”
Despite the increasing number of women entering medical and graduate school, a 2018 study from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons reported that women comprise only 5.8% of all practicing orthopaedic surgeons as compared to 92.2% being male (and 2% not indicating a gender). In the face of these numbers, the Perry Initiative was created in 2009 in honor of Dr. Jacquelin Perry, one of the first female orthopaedic surgeons in the country and a mentor to countless women and men in the field throughout her celebrated career, which spanned from 1952 to 2013.