Pacific Dugoni welcomed 30 students from MIMS’s Clinical Immersion & Mentoring Summer Internship program on Monday, July 27th. The visiting group, 15 high school students and 15 college students, spent the summer exploring different careers in the health profession and also serving as peer health educators in their own communities. Mentoring in Medicine & Science (MIMS) is a nonprofit organization based in Oakland. The group’s goal is to address health care disparities in urban communities by increasing the diversity of the health care workforce.
The visit kicked off with a full campus tour from Dr. Fred Fendler, Associate Professor in the Department of Dental Practice and Community Service. The MIMS group learned about what life is like for a first-year dental student as Dr. Fendler showed them the dental Simulation Laboratory and the general dentistry clinic to observe students. The MIMS group enjoyed checking out and touching the fake teeth used by students as they learn the basics of dentistry in the Sim Lab. A fun highlight was seeing first-year students in action as they practiced doing exams on each other. Multiple questions came from the group regarding clinic patient care and student experiences, and Dr. Fendler was able to share great insights drawing from his years of experience in the dental field, as a student, practitioner and professor.
After exploring the campus, the MIMS group was treated to presentations by the Director of Admissions, Stan Constantino, on how to prepare for a career in the health professions; Valeria Donald, Registered Dental Assistant, who shared her story of how she fell in love with a career in the dental field and her growing focus on community outreach and volunteering; and second-year student Lupe Madrigal, DDS 2017, who wrapped up the day of events by sharing how she was in their shoes not too long ago, exploring careers in the health profession and being attracted to dentistry because of the patient care. The MIMS students left with a wealth of knowledge about dentistry and sported Pacific Dugoni orange drawstring backpacks given to them as a gift. We look forward to welcoming MIMS back to campus next summer!