First graduates from health sciences charter school earn their white coats

Families filled the USF College of Public Health auditorium earlier this month, eager to see their second-graders walk across the stage to receive their first white coat as part of graduation from King’s Kids Academy of Health Sciences (KKAHS).

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The young learners are the inaugural class for the newly formed charter school, which places an emphasis on health sciences and is helping build a pipeline for healthcare professionals who will help ease the shortage of healthcare providers, especially minority professionals.

The school, which started with kindergarten, first and second grade and targets underserved low-income school-age students of the East Tampa area, had a successful first year, said Maria Stroud, director of KKAHS.

Lennox Hoyte, MD, associate professor in USF’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Morsani College of Medicine, acts as a mentor to the program and, on graduation day, congratulated the graduates on their accomplishment, giving them words of support as they move forward.

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USF supports the school with faculty and students, who help coordinate mentors and /or tutors, plug into the school as guest speakers, help on career days, offer support for various science and health projects, etc.

And hopefully inspire students to consider health careers.

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KKAHS Principal Maria Stroud helps put a white coat on Thomas Scott, who was instrumental in helping start the school when he was on the Tampa City Council.

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Dr. Lennox Hoyte (left) with KKAHS Principal Maria Stoud.

 

Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xIMEFvU3ds&feature=youtu.be