Now Accepting Applications for the Out4STEM Program

A student from the Out4STEM Program dissects a sheep's brain.

Attention, Philadelphia high school students: we are excited to announce the College of Physicians of Philadelphia is now accepting applications for the 2019-2020 cohort of the out4STEM Internship Program!

The out4STEM Internship Program is a one-year, summer and after-school internship program aimed at LGBTQIA high school students in Philadelphia who have an interest in healthcare/medicine or science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The Program also seeks to address the unique challenges facing Philadelphia LGBTQIA youth in an accepting, STEM-oriented safe space. The Program takes advantage of the unique resources of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, including the world-famous Mütter Museum, the Historical Medical Library, and our vast network of Fellows to create an engaging experience unlike any other youth program.

During the course of the program, students will achieve the following goals:

  • Learn about careers related to science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and healthcare/medicine.
  • Cultivate relationships between like-minded, motivated Philadelphia LGBTQIA students and professionals.
  • Develop a greater understanding of the body’s physiological response to stress.
  • Facilitate stress-relieving techniques.
  • Address the impact of bullying and discrimination and develop responses.
  • Learn to communicate, heal, and build a community.

Out4STEM Students showing off their masks at the Masquerade 2015

The program consists of two parts. The first is a four-week summer internship that takes place through the month of July (the upcoming summer internship will take place July 5-27, 2019). The second part is an after-school program that takes place once a week through the 2019-2020 school year. Transit tokens to and from all events will be supplied by the Center for Education. Students will also receive a stipend upon successful completion of the program. With the exception of off-site field trips, all activities will take place at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia (19 South 22nd Street).

In order to be eligible for the Out4STEM Internship Program, candidates must meet the following requirements (Note: There are no costs to enroll or be enrolled in the Out4STEM Internship Program):

  • Currently enrolled in a high school within the Philadelphia School District, including public, private, parochial, or charter schools.
  • Possess an interest in healthcare, medicine, or STEM (science, technology, engineering, or math)

Interested students must submit an application form form accompanied by the following items:

If you are interested in joining the out4STEM Internship Program, you can fill out our online application. We require all students receive permission from a parent or guardian and provide contact information for a teacher or other adult mentor (coach, youth group leader, religious leader, etc.) who will serve as a reference. In order to better get to know you, we ask that you include in your application the answer the following questions:

1) “What aspect of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) is most interesting to you and why?”
2) “What do you hope to get out of being a member of the out4STEM Program?”

Your answer can take the form of a brief essay (MAX 750 words) or a video (MAX 10 minutes). If you choose to create a video, the format is up to you; just remember to answer the above prompt. Selected applicants will be asked to take part in an interview. All applicants must be prepared to submit a work permit (information on how to obtain one can be found here).

Application materials must be submitted no later than 11:59PM on Friday, May 31, 2019.

If you have any questions, contact Victor Gomes, the out4STEM Coordinator (vgomes@collegeofphysicians.org). You can also learn more about the out4STEM Internship Program by consulting our website or checking our Frequently Asked Questions.

The out4STEM Internship program is made possible through a generous grant from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

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Philly 9th Graders: Join the Karabots Junior Fellows Program!

Two students from the Karabots Junior Fellows Program experiment with a Laënnec stethoscope

Are you a Philly 9th grader with an interest in health care or medicine? Are you a Philadelphia public or charter school teacher or counselor who knows 9th graders who are interested in careers in medicine?

The Center for Education of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia is now accepting applications for the Summer 2019 installment of the Karabots Junior Fellows Program.

Founded in 2009, the Karabots Junior Fellows Program is for Philadelphia high school students interested in pursuing careers in medicine. Through hands-on activities, innovative educational programming, interactions with healthcare professionals, and engagements through the unique resources of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia (including the world-renowned Mütter Museum and the Historical Medical Library), the Program introduces students to the diverse fields available in healthcare and medicine. It also empowers students to take charge of their health and encourage healthy lifestyle choices for their families and their communities.

Students in the KArabots Junior Fellows Program monitor each other's blood pressure at Drexel University's Physical Therapy Lab

The next summer program will take place August 12-23, 2019. This year’s theme is “Defeating Disease,” focusing on the biology, treatment, and response to infectious disease from a variety of scientific, medical, and historical perspectives.

Participants may also have the possibility to stay for a multi-year after-school program focused on healthcare, STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), academic and career advisement, and college preparation that goes through twelfth grade.

Students interested in joining the Karabots Junior Fellows Program must fulfill the following requirements:

  • They must be entering the 10th grade in Fall 2019.
  • They must be a Philadelphia resident.
  • They must be attending a Philadelphia public or charter high school.
  • They must have an interest in biology and the healthcare professions.
  • They will be the first in their immediate family to graduate from a college or university.
  • They must qualify for a FREE or REDUCED PRICE school lunch.
  • They may not have any disciplinary problems on their school record.
  • They must have permission from a parent/guardian to take part in the program.
  • They must be prepared to provide a work permit if they are brought in for an interview (more information on obtaining a work permit).

The Karabots Junior Fellows take part in a yoga demonstration led by Laura Baehr

Interested students can complete our online application form. The application must include the name and contact information of an adult supporter (parent, guardian, or adult over the age of 18 willing to vouch for the student), a reference from a teacher or counselor, and a brief personal statement in the form of an essay, video, or audio clip. The deadline to apply is 11:59PM on Friday, May 31, 2019.

To learn more about the program, please consult our website or check out our FAQ. Direct all inquiries to Kevin D. Impellizeri, Assistant Director of the Karabots Junior Fellows Program (email: kimpellizeri@collegeofphysicians.org; phone: 215-372-7313).

 

The Karabots Junior Fellows Visit the Karabots Center

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program pose in front of a plaque devoted to Nicholas and Athena Karabots at the CHOP Karabots Pediatric Care Center

Frequent readers will know we strongly believe in bringing students in our youth programs to the places where healthcare and science take place. Last week, the students in the fifth cohort of the Karabots Junior Fellows Program visited the Karabots Pediatric Care Center of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Observant readers will notice the Center shares its name with our program, as both were made possible through generous contributions from Nicholas and Athena Karabots and the Karabots Foundation. While at the Center, our students toured their facilities and met with members of their dedicated healthcare staff.

Opened in 2013, and located in West Philadelphia, the Karabots Center offers a host of different healthcare and outreach services for communities in West Philadelphia and beyond. In addition to a variety of health services, the Center offers community health and wellness programs, assisting in such capacities as literacy, education for new mothers, asthma prevention, homeless assistance, support for victims of domestic violence. Their facilities see roughly 60,000 patients per year.

During their visit, they met with Tyra Bryant-Stephens, MD, a renowned specialist in childhood asthma. Dr. Bryant-Stephens is the founder and Medical Director of the Community Asthma Prevention Program (CAPP) at CHOP. She shared her personal journey, her work in asthma prevention, as well as some health and wellness tips. They also met with Andrea Bailer, MSN, CRNP, one of their experienced pediatric nurses who talked about her personal and professional experience.

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program interact with a medical interpreter on a scree at the CHOP Karabots Pediatric Care Center

The students were excited to briefly tour the Center’s medical facilities. They also got to visit their community garden. Maintained by members of the West Philadelphia community, the garden produces healthy fruit, vegetables, and herbs for patients and families in the Healthy Weight Program. In 2016, the garden yielded roughly 1,000 pounds of herbs and vegetables.

We are thankful for CHOP opening their doors and sharing their wonderful work with our students.

CFE and WINS Youth Discuss Careers in STEM

Panelists speak to Philadelphia high school students at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia

In keeping with our commitment to introducing Philadelphia youth to the diverse science, technical, and medical careers available to them, students in our four youth programs–the Karabots Junior Fellows Program, the Teva Pharmaceuticals Internship, the Out4STEM Internship, and the Girls One Diaspora Club–gathered at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia with members of the Women in Natural Sciences (WINS) Program of the Academy of Natural Sciences. Together they met with a panel of outstanding women representing diverse fields in healthcare, medicine, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). Joining the students were:

  • Maria Benedetto, PT, DPT, MA, PCS (CPP Fellow), Associate Clinical Professor, Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences Department, Drexel University
  • Joanna Chan, MD, Jefferson University Physician
  • Drisana Henry, MD, MPH, Adolescent Medical Fellow, Craig-Dalsimer Division of Adolescent Medicine, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Katherine Lynch, MLS, Senior Developer, University of Pennsylvania Libraries
  • Loni Philip Tabb, PhD., Associate Professor, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Drexel University

Moderated by Kevin Impellizeri, Youth Program Coordinator, the panelists shared their personal journeys toward their fields and provided advice for aspiring medical and technological professionals. They proved there is no one set path to any career, explaining challenges and diversions they faced along the way. They also offered frank advice on challenges facing women professionals such as sexism and workplace harassment. They also shared the ways they cope with stress and how they found ways to relax when things get stressful. Our students offered insightful questions and gained a greater understanding of different professional pathways. We are extremely grateful to all the panelists who offered their time and expertise to these aspiring future professionals.

What they Did On their Summer Vacation: The Karabots Junior Fellows

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows and Penn SUMR Scholars Programs pose on the marble staircase at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia

Image courtesy of the Penn SUMR Scholars Program

A few weeks ago, the Center for Education welcomed the newest cohort of the Karabots Junior Fellows Program, who took part in an intensive two weeks of medical and STEM education. This year’s theme was Anatomy & Armor, focusing on the natural and artificial ways humans and animals protect themselves from trauma, disease, and predators. During ten content-packed days, they met with guest speakers, took part in hands-on activities, and traveled to interesting locations around the city. Along the way they also learned about subjects in anatomy, general health and wellness, and even a little bit about professionalism and preparing for their future careers.

Week One:

Our program began with our new students getting to know both each other and the College of Physicians of Philadelphia. We welcomed twenty-two students in total, representing a wide variety of backgrounds, neighborhoods, and schools. In a short amount of time, they got to know each other and learned how to work together, taking part in a variety of team-building activities. In keeping with our established history of game-based learning, among their activities was a play session of Steel Plate Games’ Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes, a cooperative computer game that relies heavily on teams learning how to communicate with each other to achieve a common goal: defusing a virtual bomb. In addition to better getting to know each other, they received an introduction to our organization, complete with a tour of the Mütter Museum.

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program play the cooperative computer game "Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes"

On their second day, the Junior Fellows received an immersive experience in the world of physical therapy, examining trauma and recovery. The theme of the day was a scenario in which a patient was injured in a car accident; over the course of their sessions, the students met with health care professionals and took part in activities related to emergency care and rehabilitation. They met with a sophisticated dummy designed to simulate real-life medical conditions, learned how to measure a patient’s vital signs, and practiced using assistive equipment such as wheelchairs and crutches.

Students in the KArabots Junior Fellows Program monitor each other's blood pressure at Drexel University's Physical Therapy Lab

Along the way they took part in lessons related to skin and the human skeleton. Healthcare professionals introduced them to careers in biomedical engineering, sports medicine, neurology, and anesthesiology. They also learned about modern and historic armors. They traveled to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to explore their armory and learn about the design choices that went into medieval armor. A representative from Temple University’s Red Diamond Battalion visited the College of Physicians of Philadelphia to show them modern military protective gear. A former student in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program demonstrated modern athletic equipment.

Week Two:

Their second week began with a day of activities and speakers related to the anatomy of animals. Speakers addressed topics related to comparative anatomy and veterinary medicine. Along the way, the students got to meet live animals, including a snake and a tortoise. The day concluded with a trip to the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, where our Karabots Junior Fellows broke into teams and took part in a photo scavenger hunt designed to teach them about natural forms of armor as well as introduce them to the diverse programming the Academy has to offer (fun fact: College of Physicians of Philadelphia Fellow Joseph Leidy served as both the Librarian and Chief Curator for the Academy and was influential in the field of paleontology).

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program pose in front of a dinosaur display at the Academy of Natural Sciences

Several activities this week addressed ways they can help protect and maintain their “armor.” Following a morning yoga session, the students met with experts in nutrition and personal fitness, learning healthy eating habits as well as a bit about self defense. They also learned about the dangers of substance abuse. This led into a series of activities related to first aid, where they learned how to set a splint and what to do in case someone they know experiences a drug or alcohol overdose. They also learned about the benefits of aerobic exercise, taught in part through a session of the rhythm-based video game series Dance Dance Revolution.

Students in the Karabots Junior Fellows Program take part in a yoga session.

Our students also cultivated their research, public speaking, and networking skills. During their first week, the Karabots Junior Fellows divided into groups and selected a specimen from the Mütter Museum. Through the course of the two weeks, they researched their specimen in preparation to deliver small tours to visiting students from the University of Pennsylvania’s SUMR (Summer Undergraduate Research) Program. The SUMR scholars are undergraduate students from underrepresented communities who come to Penn for the summer to get involved in healthcare research projects. Both they and the Karabots students had the opportunity to share their knowledge and get to know each other over museum tours and pizza. Our students also took part in sessions on establishing effective professional connections, building a successful resume, and professional email and social media use.

Wayne Cooper, one of the Karabots Junior Fellows poses with a sample of various vertebrate hearts during a sheep heart dissection

Despite being so full of activities, the week flew by quickly. By the end of the two week session, our students had a better understanding of some of the exciting healthcare careers available to them. We are eager to share more opportunities with them when they return in the fall.

How CEPI Youth Spent their Summer Vacation, Part 2: The Teva Pharmaceuticals Internship Program

The 2016 cohort of the Teva Pharmaceuticals Internship program pose with Teva employees and hold certificates of completion for completing their summer internship

As the summer winds down to a close, it’s back to school season here in Philadelphia as students make their way back into the classrooms. For the students in CEPI’s youth programs, summer was a busy time full of networking, career building, and learning outside the classroom. Yesterday, we focused on the Karabots Junior Fellows Program. Today we feature the highlights of the students in the Teva Pharmaceuticals Internship Program.

In July CEPI welcomed the newest cohort of Teva interns with an intensive four-day-a-week, four-week summer program. During the entire month, they took part in activities related to issues connected to violence, forensics, and healthcare. CEPI also welcomed Matilda David and Miriam Iken, two students participating in the University of Pennsylvania’s Bridging the Gaps Program, who helped us carry out our programming.

During Week 1, we introduced our new Teva interns to the College of Physicians of Philadelphia as well as each other. Highlights from their first week included tours of the Mütter Museum and the Historical Medical Library; meeting with a Teva alum who shared her experiences in the program; and a series of games, team-building exercises, and CEPI’s home-grown room escape activity: “Dr. Mütter’s Secret Specimen.”

Week 2 brought a focus at the historical, social, and cultural factors that lead to violence. Michael Nairn, a professor of Urban Studies at the University of Pennsylvania led the interns through a history of race relations in Philadelphia and the evolution of the city’s neighborhoods. Barb Fox discussed the upcoming June 5th Memorial (memorializing the victims of a fatal building collapse at 22nd and Market on June 5, 2013). Jon Goff, who currently serves as the College of Physicians of Philadelphia’s Advancement Information Manager, shared his experience serving in the Peace Corps. Other topics and activities included a discussion of intimate partner violence and a trip to the Karabots Pediatric Care Center of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to meet with a panel of medical professionals.

During Week 3, the focus shifted toward forensic science. The fellows met with forensic experts and took place in a series of hands-on activities to strengthen their deductive and investigative powers. Crime scene expert Gladys “GG” Siebert walked them through a real-life (simulated) crime scene in the Benjamin Rush Medicinal Plant Garden; they took part in blood spatter analysis with Drexel Biology professor Susan Gurney.  Forensic expert Kimberlee Moran taught them how to take and examine fingerprints, and Mütter Museum Director (and formerly an F.B.I.-trained police investigator) Robert Hicks addressed the challenges of analyzing eyewitness testimony. Dr. Hicks literally threw himself into the role and was the victim of a simulated attack (similar to one he did with the Karabots Junior Fellows this past spring) and had the students attempt to recreate the event and identify the assailant. They also traveled to Drexel University’s Center City Physical Therapy Lab to learn about the physical impact of violence and how injury victims recover. They also studied topics related to family therapy and violence prevention.

Students in the Teva Pharmaceuticals Internship program practice taking vitals on a medical dummy at the Drexel University Physical Therapy Labs

The fourth and final week focused on coping and community action, and the interns explored ways to face violence in their communities. They met with Tieshka Smith, creator of #RacismisaSickness, a multi-medium exhibit addressing the impact of police violence. They journeyed to Eastern State Penitentiary to discuss the impact of prisons in America (and see the site’s new exhibit on the subject: Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration) They also expanded their cultural horizons as they met with Teva alums Binta and Adunia who shared their experiences living and growing up in Africa. Finally, they made preparations for their future by meeting with STEM-related professionals from internship benefactor Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd. They also helped develop a toolkit for coping with and combating violence in their communities (the toolkit is scheduled to debut as part of the second annual Pennsylvania Teen Health Week, January 9-13, 2017).

We have a wide array of activities lined up for both of our youth programs, so be sure to check back here to see what the upcoming school year has in store for the healthcare professionals and community leaders of the future!

The Karabots Junior Fellows Untangle Common Threads and Meet their Mentors

The Karabots Junior Fellows take part in "Speed dating" with your medical professionals who will serve as mentors

As part of the program, the Karabots Junior Fellows are paired with a local health professional who serves as a mentor, providing advice and guidance through the Fellows’ high school years and beyond. Recently CEPI hosted a meet-and-greet where the Fellows had the chance to meet with our pool of energetic young professionals who have volunteered their time to serve as mentors. Together, they and the Fellows participated in a variety of icebreakers and team-building activities to better get to know one another and find mentors who will be a good fit for our Fellows.

The Karabots Junior Fellows work with aspiring mentors to untangle a human knot

The activities focused around the theme of string. First, they broke into small groups to discover a “common thread” between them, something about them which everyone in the group had in common. They then put their camaraderie to the test by working together to form and untangle a human knot. After our string-themed activities the mentors and Fellows took part in some “speed dating,” sitting across from each other and holding 30-60 second conversations to get to know each other.

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We are extremely thankful for all the potential mentors who volunteered to help us make a difference for these promising students.