Local Program Introduces Health Care to Charlotte-area Students

July 11, 2024

A group of people standing behind a banner that reads PATCH.

Propelling Adolescents Towards Careers in Healthcare (PATCH) is a high school medical pathway program for underrepresented minority students within Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. PATCH is a 16-week program that provides these student scholars with the opportunity to learn from interactive workshops involving several health care disciplines. The scholars also learn from physicians and health care professionals in the classroom while engaging in community health research.

This year, 12 Wake Forest University School of Medicine medical students who were completing their rotations at the Charlotte campus helped to lead the program and were supervised by Iris Cheng, MD, clinical professor of general internal medicine. The medical students served in various leadership roles while also serving as coaches for the research teams. The scholars presented their findings during the closing ceremony on Saturday, May 11.

This is the 10th year for the PATCH program and 44 scholars completed the program this year. Through this pipeline, these students will have further opportunities to learn about medicine through programs offered by Atrium Health Medical Education and Workforce Development.