BHSU Hosts Black Men in White Coats for Sixth Year

More than 200 students, parents and professionals attended Baptist Health Sciences University HealthCORE Black Men in White Coats: Building Diverse Health Care Professionals summit for fifth grade through college students interested in pursuing medical and science careers. The summit was held on Saturday, April 6.

Ronda Brown, an inclusion English teacher at Trezevant High School in Memphis, attended the first Black Men in White Coats summit with her son Dallas six years ago when he was a freshman at White Station High School. “Black Men in White Coats definitely played a major role in solidifying his decision to go into medicine,” said Ronda. “He met a lot of African American professionals in medicine.”

Dallas is now a junior premedical student at Davidson College in North Carolina. Ronda said that she thought about what the program did for Dallas, and that inspired her to attend the event this year with one of her female students who is interested in pursuing a career in health care.

Dr. Dale Okorodudu, founder of the national Black Men in White Coats initiative, served as keynote speaker. Other speakers included Samuel Pieh, CEO and administrator for Baptist Memorial Hospital-Crittenden, and Dr. Tamunoinemi Bob-Manuel, interventional cardiologist with Stern Cardiovascular Foundation. Activities included speed networking, hands-on demonstrations and opportunities to learn about local resources and financial literacy.

During the summit, Ronda met with Dr. Okorodudu, and Dallas thanked him via FaceTime for the inspiration Black Men in White Coats provided to him.

“We were excited to welcome Dr. Dale Okorodudu to Memphis again for our Black Men in White Coats Annual Summit,” said Lilian Nyindodo, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.S., chair and associate professor of biomedical sciences at BHSU College of Osteopathic Medicine and co-chair of BHSU’s HealthCORE initiative, which includes Black Men in White Coats. “This is an important initiative for our community and the advancement of diversity, equity and inclusion in health care. Black Men in White Coats aligns with our efforts to offer resources to local students interested in pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering and math, and served as the foundation for our BaptistU HealthCORE program.”

The next Black Men in White Coats summit will be held on Saturday, Feb. 22, 2025.

BaptistU HealthCORE exposes students to careers in health care and provides them with resources, support and mentoring opportunities to succeed. Baptist started offering this programming after hosting its first Black Men in White Coats summit in 2018. The goal of the program is to inspire underrepresented minority students to consider medical careers and increase ethnic and socioeconomic diversity in the field of medicine.

Click here for more information about BaptistU HealthCORE.