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March 2006

In this Issue

California Medical Schools Preparing for Pipeline

On February 1, 2006, Dr. Charles Alexander from the University of San Francisco School of Dentistry met with five California medical schools to discuss the Pipeline program. Dr. Alexander represented the California Endowment Pipeline schools by highlighting the positive outcomes of their joint efforts in minority and underrepresented student recruitment and community clinic experiences.

Five University of California medical schools were present: Davis, Irvine, San Diego, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. “The schools were very impressed by what we [Pipeline schools] are doing,” says Dr. Alexander. “They want to create a joint office for post-baccalaureate admissions and enrollment.”

Dr. Alexander was eager to note that there were impressive initiatives being taken within the medical schools already. One such action was the increased involvement of faculty in admissions reviews. Some of the schools have implemented “conditional admissions” where faculty can admit a student to a post-baccalaureate program under the condition that he/she fulfills specific requirements. Once those requirements are met, the student is fully enrolled. “It is a wonderful way for faculty to champion students who they are confident will succeed in their program,” says Dr. Alexander.

This recent meeting with the California medical schools emphasizes the growing interest that has developed about the Pipeline program and its successes. The five medical schools plan on meeting again to create one California medical pipeline center to organize their future efforts.


12 Schools and Graduate Programs of Public Health Selected by Community-Campus Partnerships for Health for Engaged Institutions Initiative Focused on Eliminating Health Disparities

Despite major advances in health care and health status in the 21st century, disparities persist between whites and people of color - creating one of the most pressing social justice issues facing America today.  Not only are most racial and ethnic groups less healthy, but they also tend to have shorter life expectancies, higher rates of infant mortality and chronic diseases, worse outcomes once diagnosed with illnesses, and less access to health care than their white counterparts. Racial and ethnic health disparities persist even when socio-economic status and insurance coverage are taken into account, due to a complex combination of factors. Eliminating these disparities will require collaborative solutions that bring communities and institutions together as partners and build upon the assets, strengths, and capacities of each.  Schools and graduate programs of public health - with their roles in educating public health professionals, conducting public health research and applying knowledge to solve public health problems - have a unique and important role to play. Community-Campus Partnerships for Health is pleased to announce today that 12 schools and graduate programs of public health are taking on the challenge of becoming engaged institutions focused on eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities as participants in the Engaged Institutions Initiative funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

One year ago, a seminar sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to celebrate its 75th anniversary called upon schools and graduate programs of public health to spearhead efforts to transform all colleges and universities into engaged institutions that are working to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities.  The Foundation defines engaged institutions as "institutions that invest in lasting relationships with communities these relationships influence, shape, and promote the success of both the institution and the community."  In supporting the Engaged Institutions Initiative, the Foundation seeks to catalyze sustained efforts by schools and graduate programs of public health to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities in partnership with communities.

Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH) will work collaboratively and intensively with teams from 12 schools and graduate programs of public health as they develop and implement strategic action plans to become fully engaged institutions focused on eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities.  Team members include academic administrators, faculty, staff, students and community partners who have made a commitment to collective action.  Selected from among 26 applicants, they provided evidence of commitment and participation from institutional and community leaders, made a clear and compelling case for their readiness to invest in authentic community-campus partnerships, and demonstrated the ability to engage other parts of their campuses in the effort. Consultation will be provided by members of the CCPH Consultancy Network, the organization's training and technical assistance arm.  The initiative will also sponsor teleconferences, identify promising practices and produce resource materials.

For more information, please contact CCPH Executive Director Sarena Seifer at sarena@u.washington.edu or 206-616-4305. Initiative announcements and updates will be posted on the CCPH website at www.ccph.info.


Measuring the Magnitude of Health Career Pipeline Leakage: A Current Study by University of California, San Francisco

Drs. Alexander and Grumbach have been selected by The California Endowment to perform a rigorous data analysis of enrollment records from several large undergraduate degree institutions in California. As part of this study, the project staff will need the assistance of institutional research directors and registrars at The University of California and The California State University to identify students that have enrolled in lower division science courses and to extract enrollment and some demographic data for this sample of students.

Study Purpose
The number of underrepresented minority (URM) students matriculating in US dental and medical schools has decreased considerably since 1996. Over the same period, the number of underrepresented minorities receiving baccalaureate degrees in the US has increased. We would like to investigate why less URM students are entering these health professional fields by systematically assessing academic outcomes for students who enroll in health career pre-requisite courses: General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Introductory Biology, Introductory Physics, and Calculus.

Study Design

Drs. Alexander and Grumbach intend to track two cohorts of first-time freshmen at participating UC and CSU campuses (see table), the first cohort entering college in Fall 1999 and the second cohort entering college in Fall 2000. Students will be included in the cohorts if they registered for at least one of the pre-health career gateway courses during any period of their enrollment. The doctors will track these students over the course of their college enrollment and create a record for each student indicating the total number of gateway courses for which the student registered, and the outcome for each course (completed vs. dropped, and grade for completed course). Drs. Alexander and Grumbach will compare the number and outcomes of students from different ethnic groups.

University of California

California State University



Los Angeles

Los Angeles




San Francisco


At the conclusion of data analysis in 2007, the project staff will prepare a campus-specific report to the Institutional Research Office comparing the minority attrition and completion rates for courses at each school compared against the aggregate rates calculated from the other participating schools. The report will not be disseminated to any bodies outside the Institutional Research Office.  We will prepare a report for the California Endowment that lists the aggregate attrition and completion rates in the University of California system and the California State University system. We will not report any school-specific results to the Endowment.


For any questions or concerns regarding this evaluation, please contact:

Charles Alexander, Ph.D. (Principal Investigator)
Associate Dean for Student Affairs
UCSF School of Dentistry
(415) 476-1323

Kevin Grumbach, M.D. (Co-Principal Investigator)
Professor and Chairman
UCSF Department of Family & Community Medicine
(415) 206-6892

Eric Chen
Project Analyst
UCSF Center for the Health Professions
(415) 476-0494



Community-Campus Partnerships for Health’s Summer Service-Learning Institute

Community-Campus Partnerships for Health is accepting applications for their 9th
Summer Service-Learning Institute, July 21-24, 2006, in the Cascade Mountains
of Washington State. http://depts.washington.edu/ccph/servicelearning.html

Service-learning is a structured learning experience that combines community service with preparation and reflection. Students engaged in service-learning provide community service in response to community-identified concerns and learn about the context in which service is provided, the connection between their service and their academic coursework, and their civic roles. Service-learning helps to equip future health professionals with the community-oriented competencies and commitment to civic engagement they will need to be effective as practitioners and community leaders.

The institute has tracks for both novice and experienced service-learning practitioners. Applications, due April 7, 2006, are available at http://depts.washington.edu/ccph/servicelearning.html

The institute curriculum combines experiential and didactic approaches to teaching and learning. A unique and effective aspect of the institute's approach is inclusion of a mentoring model in which participants work in small groups and as individuals with mentors to further shape their own action plans for developing and sustaining service-learning courses and programs. A peer-reviewed paper on the institute's proven success in fostering curricular change is available at http://www.academicmedicine.org/cgi/content/full/75/5/533.

During intensive interactive workshops and small group sessions, participants learn about these topics and more:

Curricular models of service-learning in a variety of health professions disciplines, including interdisciplinary models
Strategies for developing service-learning courses and programs, promoting reflection, building community-campus partnerships and assessing service-learning outcomes
Strategies for institutionalizing service-learning into the health professions curriculum
Core leadership skills and competencies needed to sustain service-learning partnerships
Methods and models for supporting faculty, staff and community partner development in service-learning
Effective methods for assessing service-learning outcomes for faculty, student, community, and institutional stakeholders
Strategies for developing service-learning scholarship, and documenting that scholarship for promotion and tenure

For more information on this program, visit: http://depts.washington.edu/ccph/mentor.html


Awards and Accolades

RWJF Dental Pipeline Scholar Award winner (2005) and fourth year dental student at UNC, Ms. Jonelle S. Grant, was awarded the UNC Chancellor's Award entitled the Boka W. Hadzija Award. Boka W. Hadzija was an outstanding scholar, teacher and mentor of students in the School of Pharmacy and throughout the University for nearly three decades. She has been an inspiration to generations of students. In her honor, the award recognizes the graduate or professional student who has been judged most outstanding in character, scholarship and leadership. Congratulations to Ms. Jonelle S. Grant on her accomplishments!

Dr. George Blue Spruce (Assistant Dean at the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health and President of the Society of American Indian Dentists) will be moderating a panel on the Recruitment and Retention of American Indian students into the profession of Dentistry at the ADEA conference in Orlando, FL. The panel will take place on Friday, March 10, 2006. Serving on the panel with be Dr. Kevin Avery (associate dean--University of Oklahoma) Dr. Frank Ayers (associate dean--Creighton University) Dr. Christopher Halliday (Director of Indian Health Service dental programs) and DezBaa Damon (American Indian dental student at the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health).


Featured Link
The Three Doctors Foundation, an organization determined to inspire and create opportunities for inner city communities through education, mentoring and health awareness, has a wonderful website. It contains resources for scholarships, upcoming events, and information videos. You can also join their mailing list to receive information updates. Visit their website at http://www.threedoctorsfoundation.org/.



E-Newsletter Archives

About this E-Newsletter
Dental Pipeline E-Newsletter is a monthly publication of the Pipeline, Profession & Practice: Community-Based Dental Education (Dental Pipeline) program. Pipeline, Profession & Practice: Community-Based Dental Education is a national program of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation with direction and technical assistance provided by the Center for Community Health Partnerships at Columbia University Medical Center. Additional funding for the Dental Pipeline: California Initiative is provided by The California Endowment. To sign up for the E-Newsletter click here or to remove your name from the list click here.




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