Thursday, February 7, 2013


Contact: Susan Leahy, Communications Manager

(617) 643-5288



BOSTON, MA—February 7, 2013 – The MGH Center for Community Health Improvement announced today that three freshmen from Chelsea High School have been selected as MGH Youth Scholars. They are: Haidar Karim, Ibrahim Somo and Hadijat Umarova.

MGH Youth Scholars are 9th-12th-grade students from Boston, Revere and Chelsea who are interested in health or science careers and who have college aspirations. During the weekly curriculum on the MGH campus, the MGH Youth Scholars learn academic, life, and career skills that expand and enhance their educational and career options through activities related to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). These activities build exploration and skill development through experiences and relationships related to STEM subjects and careers, life sciences and health and wellness. MGH Youth Scholars continue their STEM curriculum into the summer in STEM Camp through Wheelock College.

 Beginning this month, the 31 9th grade MGH Youth Scholars are exposed to science and health careers through MGH 101, an introduction to MGH with two-day, hands-on modules in various departments such as the MGH Institute of Health Professions, Sports Medicine and Tissue Engineering. They will receive academic tutoring from 9th grade to college. MGH Youth Scholars also are introduced to the college preparation process. Financial literacy through our partner uAspire is part of the curriculum from high school to college. MGH Youth Scholars are eligible for college scholarships of up to $5,000 per year for four years.

 Research shows that educational attainment is highly correlated with economic status and is the largest predictor of health status. Every year for the past two decades Mass General has inspired hundreds of youth who are interested in health and science careers with educational activities and employment opportunities. MGH is committed to expanding the horizons of these young people as a health improvement strategy as well as a workforce development strategy. Last year the MGH Center for Community Health Improvement provided 465 youth (grades 3 through college and beyond) with STEM programming, shadowships, internships and summer jobs at MGH.

 In addition to Chelsea High School, MGH’s other partners for the MGH Youth Scholars are East Boston High School, Edward M. Kennedy Academy for Health Careers, Revere High School, the Charlestown community and Concerned Black Men of Massachusetts.


About the Center for Community Health Improvement (CCHI)

CCHI carries out its work in Chelsea, Revere, and Charlestown, where MGH has maintained healthcare centers for more than 40 years, as well as in Boston among youth, homeless persons and seniors. CCHI has partnered with the communities it serves to assess needs and create more than 38 programs that:

  • Reduce and prevent substance abuse 
  • Intervene in the cycle of violence
  • Tackle the obesity epidemic by increasing access to healthy food and physical activity
  • Increase access to care for vulnerable populations such as immigrants and refugees, seniors, and homeless people
  • Prevent cancers through early detection and screening
  • Generate interest in science and health careers among youth


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