“If They Can Make It Here, Why Can't I?” June 26, 2023
Opportunities Academy Empowers Underrepresented High Schoolers
PCOM hosted its annual Opportunities Academy from June 19 to June 23. Thirty-eight students representing twenty-two Philadelphia-area
high schools participated in the program. Of those participants, 36 identify as African
American, Latino or other groups that are traditionally underrepresented in medicine.
“A lot of medical schools don't do this for high school students,” said Zakariya Young,
an Opportunities Academy attendee and 12th grader at Bodine High School. “This is
the first DO school I've learned about. So it's a really interesting thing to learn about the difference between DOs and MDs, and experience a little bit of both in how they do things.”
Through the program, mentors introduced students to the various opportunities in health
care and provided insight as they begin their journey to college readiness.
“Just seeing the younger generation and how excited they are has honestly been a pleasure
to watch,” shared Joehannah Dorvilier-Augustin (DO ’26), Opportunities Academy mentor.
“What we're opening up their minds to, their eyes to, is one of the things that warms
my heart and makes me so excited about this program.”
Providing attendees with the chance to engage with PCOM’s diverse faculty, staff, and student population left a mark on those looking towards a future in medicine.
“It's good to see other people that look like me,” said Young. “Or just go through
the similar struggles of actually being in the medical field. It kind of gives me
hope and faith that if they can make it here, why can't I?”
programs of study at pcom
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About Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Founded in 1899, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has trained thousands
of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists
who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms.
PCOM operates three campuses (PCOM, PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia) and offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, educational psychology, osteopathic
medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy and school psychology, and graduate degrees in
applied behavior analysis, applied positive psychology, biomedical sciences, forensic
medicine, medical laboratory science, mental health counseling, non profit leadership
and population health management, organizational development and leadership, physician
assistant studies, school psychology, and public health management and administration.
PCOM students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service
to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care
to medically underserved populations. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 215-871-6100.
For more information, contact:
Public Relations Manager
Office: 215-871-6325 | Cell: