On Being African American

Throughout the interview trail, you may have noticed this: There aren’t many African Americans in medical school. However, despite the fact that we are a small percentage of our class (three males, five females), I have not once felt out of place. At Wash U, there is a commitment to diversity. Everyone is unique in some way, with people coming from all over the country and the world. People have different beliefs, thoughts, and upbringings, leading to an environment where everyone feels welcome and everyone is accepting of people of all backgrounds. Plus, the Office of Diversity Programs is a great resource, and Dr. Will Ross, associate dean of diversity affairs, is always there for you. Additionally, a large percentage of the patient population at Barnes-Jewish Hospital is African American, which can make it easier to establish rapport. This also gives you the opportunity to help your fellow classmates relate to these patients.

— Abiye I., M1