NDSU representatives attended the first Native Health Career Student Development Conference Sept. 21 at United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck, N.D. The event aimed to promote opportunities for American Indian students to pursue healthcare careers.
Students from several tribal colleges in the region and representatives from NDSU, University of North Dakota, South Dakota State University, University of South Dakota, Presentation College and United Tribes Technical College attended the conference.
Donald Warne, one of the conference organizers and director of the NDSU Master of Public Health Program, notes there are tremendous disparities in the numbers of healthcare professionals, especially in the numbers of American Indians who pursue careers in healthcare. Warne hopes communities will benefit from the conference through an increase in the number of health professionals from American Indian backgrounds.
Panel presentations featured health professionals from regional tribes and students from regional tribes who are enrolled in graduate and professional level health programs at universities across the nation. The student panels discussed experiences in medicine, pharmacy, occupational therapy, epidemiology and public health in graduate school, and encouraged the younger students to continue pursuing educational opportunities.
NDSU is recognized as one of the nation’s top 108 public and private universities by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education.