Central High School goes Cardinal Red

Central High School went red on Monday, April 18, as part of a UofL Takeover where 11th graders  gathered in-person  to speak with members of the UofL community about programs offered at the university and to how to succeed long-term. The event offered students the opportunity to engage with a panel of UofL speakers as well as participate in a college fair expo. In addition to the School of Medicine, the event was attended by the UofL Admissions, SPEED School, Nursing and other programs.

“The UofL Day at Central High School provides students with a face-to-face opportunity to gain insight about internships, co-ops, research, and shadowing experiences available to them,” said Dwayne Compton, Chief Diversity Officer for UofL School of Medicine. “Early exposure to career pathway initiatives offered by UofL assist with closing the opportunity gaps we know exist. Now more than ever, it is vital that UofL collaborate with JCPS schools like Central to assist students with becoming college and career ready.”

Panelists of the event included representatives from Dentistry, Nursing, Public Health, Admissions, and Medicine. The ULSOM panelists answered a variety of questions from the audience, including scholarship opportunities and challenges they faced during their careers. ULSOM asked panelists why the UofL day at Central is so important to high school students.

“I think it’s important to learn in the beginning what the trajectory is to go into medicine,” said Bill Ngha, Pediatrics Resident Physician, “They’ll need to know what courses they’ll have to take and how to invest in yourself early on.”

Central high school has six magnet programs in which students can elect to participate in beginning their freshman year. Dennis Mostiller and Emmanuel Edwards are two students participating in the Pre-Medicine program that is a part of the Medical/Health Services magnet. Motivated by television shows such as Grey’s Anatomy and the hands-on activities, they’re confident Medicine is the program for them.

The Pre-Medicine Program at Central High School is led by Shantel Reed, pre-medicine magnet teacher. She works to  capitalize on her student’s interests to increase engagement and success. “On Fridays, our classes watch an episode of Grey’s Anatomy as an assignment,” said Reed, “They pair medical terms from the show with their coursework to make connections.”

The importance of the Pre-Medicine program at Central High School was affirmed by UofL Pediatrics Attending, Jennifer Porter. “We know that we need diversity in medicine; patients do better with physicians who look like them. It’s important that we invest here in Kentucky to recruit people to stay here, too.”

The UofL Day at Central is part of a collaborative partnership that began in 2018 between the University of Louisville Office of Diversity and Community Engagement and Central High School. Each year more than 120 students from Central participate in the magnet programs and are introduced to UofL programming that support diversity in medicine and other concentration areas. The Pre-Medicine program traditionally graduates 33 students each year.

“The School of Medicine has a vested interest in the success of our area high school students. Our partnership with Central High School and other magnet programs is vital to our success in caring for our community through a diverse future workforce,” said Toni Ganzel, dean of the School of Medicine.

View photos from the event here.