School of Medicine Students Receive Inaugural National Medical Association Scholarships from GSMA

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GSMA Banquet

SAVANNAH – Two Mercer University School of Medicine (MUSM) students received inaugural National Medical Association Scholarships at the Georgia State Medical Association’s (GSMA) annual meeting June 13 on Hilton Head Island.

Dontre Douse, a member of the Class of 2020, and Morgan Joseph, a member of the Class of 2021, received two of the three inaugural scholarships for their character, academic achievement and dedication to assisting underserved populations. Both are pursuing M.D. degrees on MUSM’s Savannah campus.

The scholarships were presented by Dr. Linda Walden, a 1992 graduate of MUSM who serves as past president and a current member of the Board of Directors for GSMA as well as chairperson of National Medical Association Region III.

Additionally, Dr. Julianne Birt, a practicing obstetrician and community medicine faculty member at MUSM, received the Distinguished Service Medallion Award, the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a member of GSMA. Dr. Walden previously received the award in 2018.

This year’s meeting marked the 125th anniversary of the Georgia State Medical Association, which serves as the collective voice of African-American physicians and a leading force for parity and justice in medicine and the elimination of disparities in health.

About Mercer University School of Medicine (Macon, Savannah and Columbus)

Mercer University’s School of Medicine was established in 1982 to educate physicians and health professionals to meet the primary care and health care needs of rural and medically underserved areas of Georgia. Today, more than 60 percent of graduates currently practice in the state of Georgia, and of those, more than 80 percent are practicing in rural or medically underserved areas of Georgia. Mercer medical students benefit from a problem-based medical education program that provides early patient care experiences. Such an academic environment fosters the early development of clinical problem-solving and instills in each student an awareness of the place of the basic medical sciences in medical practice. The School opened a full four-year campus in Savannah in 2008 at Memorial University Medical Center. In 2012, the School began offering clinical education for third- and fourth-year medical students in Columbus. Following their second year, students participate in core clinical clerkships at the School’s primary teaching hospitals: Medical Center, Navicent Health in Macon; Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah; and The Medical Center and St. Francis Hospital in Columbus. The School also offers master’s degrees in family therapy, preclinical sciences and biomedical sciences and a Ph.D. in rural health sciences.

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Kyle Sears