John Romano, a fourth-year medical student at the TH Chan School of Medicine at UMass Chan Medical School, has been named the 2021 Pisacano Fellow. This award recognizes outstanding medical students who are committed to entering the field of family medicine.
Recipients receive up to $ 28,000 each from the Pisacano Leadership Foundation, Inc. Applicants must also demonstrate leadership skills, superior academic achievement, strong communication skills, identifiable character and integrity, and an outstanding level of community service.
“This fellowship has connected me with many leaders in the field of family medicine and will provide me with additional leadership training. I plan to leverage these connections and additional training to support future projects to increase access to primary care, ”said Romano.
Over nearly three decades, the foundation selected 166 medical students for the award. Approximately 3,000 applicants representing more than 140 medical schools competed for the scholarships.
Romano received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the College of Holy Cross in Worcester. During his undergraduate studies, he worked as an associate researcher at the National Center on Family Homelessness. He also taught a smoking cessation class in a residential addiction recovery program for people who had been incarcerated.
Romano then worked as a research coordinator for the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear. He said his daily work with patients led him to his passion for family medicine. He also created a support group for patients with rare eye disease causing blindness after learning about their need to connect with others who share the same disease.
At TH Chan School of Medicine, Romano volunteered for a free clinic in Worcester and became co-chair of the student group that helps staff, fund and coordinate the activities of the seven free clinics in the greater Greater Montreal area. Worcester. His fundraising skills helped him create a task force made up of representatives from these community programs to form the nonprofit Worcester Free Care Collaborative.
“I finally plan to practice family medicine in a rural, underserved area with my fiancee Rachel Anderson – who I partner with – as we both apply for the family medicine residency,” he said. .
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