alexa Pipeline Efforts with a Freirean Twist: The Juntos Health Disparities Research Internship | OMICS International | Abstract
ISSN: 2161-0711

Journal of Community Medicine & Health Education
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Research Article

Pipeline Efforts with a Freirean Twist: The Juntos Health Disparities Research Internship

Maria Alonso Luaces1* Natalia Suarez2 Octavio Estrella2 Won Choi3 Megha Ramaswamy4 Ana-Paula Cupertino3

1Office of Cultural Enhancement & Diversity, University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Blvd, Kansas City, KS, USA

2The National Center for Rural Health Professions, University of Illinois-Rockford 1601 Parkview Ave, Rockford, IL, USA

3Juntos Center for Advancing Latino Health, University of Kansas Medical Center, 4125 Rainbow Blvd, MS 1056, Kansas City, KS, USA

4Preventive Medicine and Public Health, University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Blvd, Kansas City, KS, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Maria Alonso Luaces
Director of Academic, Professional and Workforce Development
Office of Cultural Enhancement & Diversity
G028 Murphy, Mail Stop 4007
3901 Rainbow Boulevard, Kansas City, USA
Tel: (913) 588-1547
Fax: (913) 588-8890
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date: August 20, 2013; Accepted date: September 10, 2013; Published date: September 13, 2013

Citation: Luaces MA, Suarez N, Estrella O, Ramaswamy M, Choi W, et al. (2013) Pipeline Efforts with a Freirean Twist: The Juntos Health Disparities Research Internship. J Community Med Health Educ 3:233. doi: 10.4172/2161-0711.1000233

Copyright: © 2013 Luaces MA, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Increasing workforce diversity is essential to improving the health outcomes for minority populations, particularly Latinos. This paper describes an innovative 6-week health disparities internship program for underrepresented precollege and college students aimed at empowering students to become health science researchers focused on issues that continue to affect minority communities. Our program embraces the educational philosophy developed by Paulo Freire, which supports the development of critical awareness, critical thinking, and reflection. In this manner, this internship program shifts the paradigm away from traditional approaches focused solely on knowledge remediation. Program participants became conscious of their realities while they grew to envision themselves as agents of change capable of transforming their communities.


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