Medical Education
2615 East Clinton Ave.
Fresno, CA 93703
Tel: 559/224-3235

Alice Trinkl, UCSF News Director
Source:  Brandy Nikaido, director of communications, University of California Office of the President
Phone: 559.241.7512, or 559.313.6539; E-mail: Brandy.Nikaido@ucop.edu
Web:     www.ucsf.edu, www.fresno.ucsf.edu


April 1, 2002


Of the roughly 1,500 physicians in Fresno County, only about 120 are Latino.

As part of larger efforts to help address the persistent shortage of Latino physicians in the Valley, UCSF Fresno’s Latino Center for Medical Education and Research will present a conference aimed at motivating local high school students to pursue careers in health and medicine, with the ultimate goal of encouraging them to serve Valley communities.

The second annual “Medical Mania Conference,” is set for Saturday, April 6 from 7:15 a.m. to noon at California State University, Fresno (McLane Hall, Room 221). 

More than 100 students who are enrolled in the Doctor’s Academy at Sunnyside High School and their parents are expected to attend the conference. Students will participate in motivational presentations involving career and personal development while parents take part in sessions intended to help them foster their child’s education. Bilingual interpreters will be available to assist parents.  

The Doctor’s Academy, sponsored by UCSF Fresno, the Latino Center for Medical Education and Research as well as other community partners, seeks to increase the number of disadvantaged and underrepresented students who go on to become competitive applicants to graduate health profession schools.

Now in its third year, the Doctor’s Academy enrolls about 40 high school freshmen annually. The 2002-03 freshman class will be introduced at the conference.

Doctor’s Academy students participate in accelerated classes with an emphasis on math, science and writing, enrichment programs, visits to graduate health professions schools, and other support services.

“The need for additional Latino physicians and other health care professionals in the San Joaquin Valley is evident now more than ever,” said Katherine A. Flores, MD, director of the Latino Center and a family physician in Fresno. “The Valley is one of the fastest growing regions in the state and one of the most diverse.”  

“UCSF Fresno is growing Valley doctors to help meet the need,” continued Flores. “At this conference and through our pipeline program, the Doctor’s Academy, we are

preparing local students early for careers in medicine. This is in addition to training 175 medical residents each year, 50 percent of whom stay in the area to practice.”

For more information about the April 6 conference, please call Bertha Dominguez at 559.241.7670.