New group focuses on diversity and inclusion initiatives at the USA College of Medicine

Posted on October 25, 2021 by Brittany Otis
Brittany Otis

Brett Martin, M.D., neuroradiologist with USA Health, shows residents medical imaging of the head and neck.Download larger image

In an effort to create more diversity among residents and fellows in graduate medical education, the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) subcommittee was created at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine in August 2021.

In partnership with the USA Office of Graduate Medical Education and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the subcommittee recently hosted an open house event targeting third and fourth year medical students and students interested in reapplying for a residency training. The goal is to provide opportunities in healthcare to underrepresented students before they enter the workforce.

“We want to care for patients the best way we can and one of the ways we can do that is by having a diverse representation throughout our hospitals and clinics,” said Brett Martin, M.D., chair of the DEI subcommittee and a neuroradiologist at USA Health. “We want to make sure other departments within the university, such as nursing, pharmacy and laboratory, benefit from this group as well.”

The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the organization responsible for accrediting residency and fellowship programs, saw a need for a subcommittee to recruit and retain a diverse and inclusive workforce of residents and fellows, faculty members, senior administrative staff members and other relevant members.  USA decided to form a group specific to graduate medical education needs. 

Franklin Trimm, M.D., associate dean for diversity and inclusion at the USA College of Medicine, said he believes the passion and commitment the members will bring to this group will help to further identify changes that are needed in our communities.

“Residents and fellows are a significant component of the clinical learning environment,” Trimm said. “Through the work of the subcommittee, I believe we will build on the inclusiveness of that learning environment by providing a space where members, especially underrepresented students, can focus on learning medicine and the art of patient care.”

The group plans to pursue community service and public outreach activities where they will talk to middle and high school students in Mobile and Baldwin counties. By doing this, Martin said, it will show students why representation matters in healthcare.

“I’m humbled and honored to be a part of this group,” Martin said. “I want students to recognize they are needed and that this group represents positivity that can be put back into their work, which is rewarding.”

The group plans to host a virtual or in person meet and greet in spring 2022. If you’re interested in joining, or for more information, contact Tomeika Hawkins-Rodgers, graduate medical education accreditation specialist, at

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