June 1, 2007 MAO honors MGH minority graduates
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June 1, 2007

MAO honors MGH minority graduates

The Multicultural Affairs Office (MAO) recently celebrated the MGH residents' and fellows' graduation May 17 at the Museum of African American History. This year, there were 19 underrepresented minority (URM) residents graduating from 10 residency training programs, and over 70 URM faculty, trainees and their guests attended the event. The ceremony began with welcoming remarks from Elena Olson, JD, executive director of the MAO, followed by the roll of graduates read by Ronald Dixon, MD, manager of Trainee Affairs. Graduates and their spouses were invited onto the stage to receive a personalized gift as a token of appreciation and recognition for their success.

This year's event was unique in that it marked an increased involvement by the URM community at the MGH. Of the residents entering the Department of Internal Medicine in 2007, an unprecedented 30 percent are URMs.

The MAO promotes the message that high quality patient care is about more than just delivery. In working to promote the increased recruitment, retention and advancement of the careers of URM students, physicians, and researchers, the MAO enhances the cultural competency of care providers at the MGH. With the patient population becoming increasingly diverse — in Boston as well as nationally — the MAO's mission has become crucial to enhancing the quality of patient care, teaching and research at the MGH. Says Olson, "Diversity is a cornerstone of excellence, and we are immensely proud of all our graduates. It is the responsibility of the MGH to retain these quality individuals, promote their personal and professional development and create a welcoming environment and vibrant community for all underrepresented minorities — no matter which side of care they represent."

Back row, from left, Michael Obeng, MD; Alden McDonald, MD; Jason Hall, MD; Ricardo Rivera, MD; Omar Sahagun, MD; Nathaniel Evans, MD; Jesus Garcia, MD; front, from left, Wendy Macias, MD; Cheilonda Johnson, MD; Charmaine Smith, MD; Nwanneka Okolo, MD; Audra Robertson, MD and Stephanie Roundtree, MD

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