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MERIT Scholars’ Inspiring Stories and Call for Civic Engagement Committee Members

MERIT Symposium

Our 2nd Annual MERIT Symposium was featured during Medical Grand Rounds on Friday, October 12. MERIT Scholars Zion Smith, a high school junior, and Taylor Rooks, a senior spoke about their experiences with the program. Zion performed her summer research project in the laboratory of Larissa Shimoda, professor of in the Division of Pulmonary. Featured MERIT alumni speaker Martin Orellana is now a Meyerhoff Scholar at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and after graduating plans to pursue a medical degree and doctorate to achieve his dream of becoming a physician scientist. The program was moderated by Jerimiah Kouka, a senior MERIT scholar who performed his summer research in the laboratory of Cindy Sears, professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases, in close collaboration with Jawara Allen, an MD-PhD student in our School of Medicine.

The Department of Medicine has been a longtime supporter of the MERIT program. If you are interested in participating as laboratory mentor, please sign up using the following link:

MERIT speakers

Call for Civic Engagement Committee Members

We are looking for new voices on the Department of Medicine Civic Engagement Committee.

The committee was formed in 2016 in response to Dean Rothman’s request to department directors to generate ideas and devise a plan for Hopkins to make a positive impact on the Baltimore community following the riots that ensued after the funeral of Freddie Gray.

Over the past two years, the committee has sponsored several informative sessions addressing issues relating to strained relations between the police and the community, unconscious bias, community engagement, healthcare disparities and more. The committee has also partnered with the Baltimore City Housing Authority to involve faculty and staff in health fairs, clothing drives and food drives.

To continue the efforts of the committee and its engagement in the surrounding community, we are asking you to consider becoming a member to ensure that there is adequate representation of faculty and staff from all divisions.

If you are interested in serving on the committee, please contact: Tamala Knox at [email protected]


Kelsey Bennett