Evaluation of a Dermatology Mentoring Program for Medical Students
Introduction: In dermatology, there is scant research exploring the mentorship of medical students. Mentorship can play a critical role in facilitating student development, especially when applying to a competitive specialty such as dermatology. Our study evaluates the effectiveness of a mentoring program that paired medical students with current dermatology program residents, alumni, and faculty.
Methods: Medical student mentees were paired with dermatology residents, attendings, and alumni mentors. Pre- and post-surveys were administered to 13 participants. Responses were collected using a digital-based visual analog scale rating from 1 to 10, with 1 being strongly disagree and 10 being strongly agree. Seven students completed both surveys and a Wilcoxon signed-rank test was used for analysis.
Results: There was not a statistically significant difference in students reporting whether they knew what was expected of them as a medical student interested in dermatology (P=0.062). However, there was a statistically significant increase in students reporting access to research in dermatology (P=0.016). There was also a statistically significant increase in students reporting connections to dermatologists after the program (P=0.047). 100% of participants indicated they had a good experience with the program and wished to continue the program with their mentor in the following year.
Conclusion: Although our sample size was small and represents a single center study, the positive results and reviews from participants suggest that this program would be a good addition to any medical school with access to dermatologists.
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