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“AHmong Us” Encourages Hmong Students to Get Into Medical Field

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WAUSAU, Wisconsin (WSAW) – The Hmong community represents 12% of the population of Wausau, but Hmong health professionals are under-represented. A program called AHmong Us tries to solve this problem by giving students the training they need.

Ten high school students received hands-on preparation and mentoring for medical school.

“I really wish I had had this kind of opportunity as a kid,” said Andrew Sepiol, a 2nd year medical student at the Medical College of Wisconsin Central Wisconsin.

Sepiol worked directly with the group of students. He said he had a passion to help Hmong students who wish to enter the medical field.

“Some medical schools will make it more difficult for people of certain races who are overrepresented in medicine. Thus, Asians are generally listed as overrepresented in medicine, but people of Hmong descent are also listed as Asians. There aren’t too many Hmong doctors, ”Sepiol said.

For many, the idea of ​​medical school can be daunting.

“I hear Hmong students telling me that ‘I’m intimidated to apply’ even to the AMP program just because they feel like it’s a lot of engagement and they feel it because they don’t know anyone who went through the processes, ”said Sheng Khang, education outreach coordinator.

This is why bonding is an important aspect of the program.

“Having someone humanize the process would have helped me a lot to start earlier and build my confidence,” Sepiol said.

“I think this program in itself is just a confidence booster. We’re here to help these students understand that they can do whatever they want. And that they can be like those leaders and professionals that we bring, ”said Maysee Lao, program mentor for middle schools.

The first session of the program was such a success that they welcome 10 other students. Recruitment has already started. Please email [email protected] if you want the app. For this session, all under-represented populations are invited to apply.

Copyright 2021 WSAW. All rights reserved.

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