LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Female high school and medical students interested in pursuing careers in medicine and engineering received a boost to their professional aspirations this past weekend by being part of a very special “hands-on” program conducted at the Orthopaedic Institute for Children. Held in co-sponsorship with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, the event was part of the nationally acclaimed Perry Outreach Program, which works to inspire young women to be leaders in these fields and to foster their understanding of and appreciation for the career that may lie ahead.
The Medical Student Outreach Program attracted women in their first or second year of medical school who are undecided about specialty choice or have expressed interest in exploring a career in orthopaedics. Participants heard lectures from local women surgeons, networked with industry leaders, and performed hands-on skills modules and mock orthopaedic surgeries.
The following day young women from high schools (grades 10 and above) attended a one-day program where they heard from women leaders in the fields of medicine and engineering and received hands-on experience by performing mock orthopaedic surgeries and biomechanics exercises.
“Since its founding in 2009, the Perry Outreach Program has touched more than 4,000 students nationwide; and we were honored to once again be the Los Angeles host site for this prestigious program,” said Dr. Jennifer Beck, associate director of the Center for Sports Medicine at OIC. “It was invigorating to see the excitement on the faces of the attendees, and we hope that this event helped inspire them to pursue these important career paths.”
Despite the increasing number of women entering medical and graduate school, women make up only 6.1 percent of fully accredited practicing orthopaedic surgeons according to a 2014 survey by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Only 12.4 percent of the faculty at engineering schools is women, with that percentage being lower for mechanical engineering. In the face of these numbers, the Perry Initiative was created in 2009 in honor of Dr. Jacquelin Perry, one of the first female orthopaedic surgeons in the country and a mentor to countless women and men in the field throughout her celebrated career, which spanned from 1952 to 2013.
About Orthopaedic Institute for Children
Orthopaedic Institute for Children (OIC) was founded in 1911 as Los Angeles Orthopaedic Hospital. Focused solely on musculoskeletal conditions in children, Orthopaedic Institute for Children receives 60,000 patient visits each year. In alliance with UCLA Health and with the support of the OIC Foundation, we advance pediatric orthopaedics worldwide through outstanding patient care, medical education and research. Our locations in downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Westwood and Calexico treat the full spectrum of pediatric orthopaedic disorders and injuries. For more information, visit us at ortho-institute.org.