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Education / Medical Student Education / Office of Medical Education / Service-Learning / Physician and Society Community Advocacy Projects

Our Students Make A Difference!

The University of Cincinnati College of Medicine (UCCOM) curriculum prepares students to make a difference in their communities. The coronavirus pandemic has unearthed deeply rooted health inequities in the Cincinnati metropolitan area.

map of cincinnati communities

Medical Student Reflections on COVID, Community Nonprofit Partners, and Social Determinants of Health

About the Physician & Society Course

  • Physician & Society is a required course in the first and second year curriculum at UCCOM
  • The most important objective of the course is to introduce students to Cincinnati communities inhabited by their future patients and to teach the impact of social determinants of health (SDOH) on health care outcomes.

Evolution of the Service-Learning Projects

  • In the fall of 2020, the first-year class of 185 students were divided into 15 small groups. These small groups are called Learning Communities (LC's). Each LC partnered with a different community nonprofit partner in the Cincinnati metropolitan area to conduct a service-learning project. The LC and community nonprofit partner worked collaboratively to address a specific SDOH, such as food or housing insecurity.

Accomplishing the Goal

  • Course directors of the Physician and Society course, Dr. Lisa Kelly and Dr. Joseph Kiesler, recognize how the coronavirus pandemic has unmasked the impact of SDOH and the health disparities the course seeks to teach.
  • The course directors also recognize that UCCOM students, as future physicians, have a unique perspective to share with the community. UCCOM students are the generation of doctors that will be expected to address various health disparities depend by the conronavirus pandemic. As a result of the service-learning work, our students have first-hand knowledge about the challenging work of community nonprofits throughout the Cincinnati metropolitan area.

Addressing the Health Inequities in our Community

  • In fall of 2021, the LC's were reconvened virtually to review their experiences with the community nonprofit partners. Specifically, their task was to reflect on the challenges COVID placed on their community nonprofit partners, and on the communities those partners serve.

Collection of Community Nonprofit Artifacts Documenting the Impact of COVID-19

  • This website is a collection of the LC group reflections. These artifacts provide a unique commentary on COVID-19, social determinants of health, and the community nonprofits in the Cincinnati metropolitan area from the perspective of UCCOM students.

Contact Us

Office of
Medical Education

Medical Sciences Building Room G453 - G456
231 Albert Sabin Way
PO Box 670520
Cincinnati, OH 45267-0520

Mail Location: 0520
Phone: 513-558-1795
Fax: 513-558-4949