PCOM medical students have raised more than $36,000 and secured over 7,000 protective
masks to be distributed to local health professionals.
In the wake of the global pandemic caused by COVID-19, a group of students at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) have responded to the growing need for personal protective equipment (PPE) and formed
Medical Students for Masks, a group of medical and nursing students in the Philadelphia
area dedicated to raising funds to secure FDA-approved N95 respirator masks for local
The group was organized and is being led by osteopathic medicine students Gabrielle Yankelvich (DO ’21) and Judy Lubas (DO ’21). Finding themselves
pulled from their third-year rotations, Gabrielle and Judy felt compelled to join
the fight against COVID-19 any way they could. In collaboration with Briana Krewson
(DO ’23) and Mark Siden (DO ’21), they started Medical Students for Masks. Since mid-March,
Medical Students for Masks has raised over $36,000 and secured over 7,000 masks to
be distributed to local healthcare systems, first responders and home health agencies.
“I think in these times of uncertainty people want to help but are unsure how to get
involved. Our fundraiser has given people a way to help while being socially distant
at home,” said Ms. Yankelvich.
Since its formation, this group has expanded from PCOM students to include medical
and nursing students from across the region. Through social media and word of mouth,
this group has grown to include over 1,000 volunteers. Additionally, Gabrielle and
team have worked to help medical students in Pittsburgh, Maine, Florida and Georgia
start their own similar fundraisers.
“We are extremely humbled and thankful for all of the donations and amazing help from
our volunteers. This project has inspired me and emits a beautiful light in the midst
of all of the uncertainty and chaos,” said Ms. Yankelvch.
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: Daniel McCunney Associate Director, News and Media Relations Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Office: 215-871-6304 | Cell: