The Boston Combined Residency Program in Pediatrics(BCRP) links the pediatric training programs of Boston Children’s Hospital and Boston Medical Center. With Boston being a minority majority city, both hospitals have at their core a commitment to diversity on all fronts including advancing community outreach, reducing inequitable health care outcomes, and promoting and cultivating a diverse workforce within an inclusive learning environment. This mission is reflected in both institutions being designated LGBTQ Healthcare Leaders by the Healthcare Equity Index as well as the robust network of institutional resources dedicated to reaching these goals.
The BCRP is committed to reducing healthcare disparities and creating a workforce that reflects the diversity of our patient populations. Providing children and families with the very best care requires an understanding of their physical, emotional, and cultural needs. For this reason, we seek diverse residents who possess intellectual curiosity, a passion for medicine, and a compassionate commitment to patients and their families.
The BCRP embraces all forms of diversity including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, disability, socioeconomic background, gender identity, sexual orientation, and life experiences, like being the first in your family to go to college. We also recognize and celebrate that many of us are a part of several of these communities. We are committed to recruiting and supporting a diverse resident workforce and have outlined the following goals:
- To increase the number of BCRP housestaff from underrepresented minority groups, broadly defined as listed above.
- To support trainees that are underrepresented in medicine through faculty engagement, mentorship, education, and resident attendance to national conferences such as SNMA and LMSA.
- To shape the professional development of a cadre of physicians who will become leaders in all aspects of pediatrics including patient care, research, medical education, health care policy and child advocacy.
The council is made up of residents, fellows and faculty who come from underrepresented backgrounds, and their allies. All BCRP-affiliated residents and faculty are invited to join the Diversity Council.
The BCRP Diversity Council is led by multiple residents, faculty members and chief residents each year, including the BCRP Diversity Officer, two Associate Program Directors, and a Diversity Chief Resident at each site. The Council is divided into three working groups that each focus on an important part of our mission and are led by resident and faculty l leaders who are dedicated to these ongoing efforts each year.
Recruitment: Focuses on creating an inclusive environment for incoming applicants while also organizing opportunities for applicants to meet resident and faculty members of the Diversity Council. We offer the following programming each recruitment season to our applicants:
- Diversity Mixers throughout the interview season with residents, fellows, and faculty who are a part of the Diversity Council in a relaxed atmosphere.
- Council Connect! A program that pairs each applicant with a current BCRP resident via email to answer questions before, during, or after your interview.
- Diversity Council Hosting: Stay with a current Diversity Council resident during your visit to the BCRP.
Education: Reviews and enhances our residency-wide curriculum to ensure that we are spending time educating our residents and faculty on topics that will improve their ability to care for our diverse patient populations. Highlights of this work include expansion of Health Equity Rounds to both hospitals and across the US, noon conferences focused on the concept of “Fit” in recruitment as well as social media campaigns that highlight health inequities and evidence-based approaches to providing equitable care.
Community: Fosters and supports our community within the BCRP by providing opportunities for mentorship, collaboration with pathway programs within our partner institutions, and ensuring that our residents are represented at national and regional conferences such as LMSA and SNMA by providing financial support for them to attend these important events. In 2021-2022, we are piloting a funded, opt-in mentorship program that pairs residents from the Diversity Council with faculty based on shared interests, passions, and paths. We routinely host events to bring the Council together, including mixers and professional development sessions at faculty homes in order to reach our goals above. We are also committed to helping our diverse residents take advantage of specialized programming at national conferences, including participation in the APA New Century Scholars Program.
URM Second Look Day
As part of our intern recruitment program, we offer a funded second look day for interviewees from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in medicine (UIM) as defined broadly by the AAMC. The goal of this program is to provide more familiarity and exposure to our program, our affiliated institutions, the city of Boston, and BCRP residents and faculty from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds. This sponsored second-look day for UIM interviewees has not yet been scheduled but is usually about two weeks after our final interview day. The day’s program has included introductions from leadership at both institutions, a faculty panel, a candid discussion about the impact of structural racism in Boston, lunch with residents, optional individual meetings with faculty, time to explore the city, and a Diversity Council Mixer with invited residents and faculty. When the event is held in-person, the BCRP provides second look attendees with lodging and meals for the visit and financial support to defray travel costs. Unfortunately the event has to be virtual for 2021-2022.