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Initiatives for Children


The Gateway to Higher Education
Howard Hiatt Physician
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The last several years I've been on the Board of the Gateway to Higher Education, a program in New York City's... New York City school system that is designed to help minority kids get into science and medical careers. The program takes children... well, originally was directed at kids starting ninth grade, now it starts at seventh grade, offers them special classes in math and science in schools, within the schools in which the program begins. They're offered special training in math and science, a longer school day, Saturday mornings of enrichment experience in a place like the Museum of Natural History or Rockefeller University, a summer of one month vacation instead of three, and two months working in laboratories at Mount Sinai Medical School or elsewhere in New York. And, the results now in something of the order 15 or 16 high schools throughout all of New York, the results have been extraordinary. In high schools in which the drop-out rate is over 50% the situation in New York schools as in inner city schools around the country, around this country, are very, very unhappy ones. The results in the first 2000 kids that went through this program were that 97% graduated from high school, 95% went on to four-year colleges, and of that group, at the time the last study was done, 80% had graduated and many had gone on to medical school or to degree programs in science.

We have a Gateway Graduate here at the Brigham. There are two Gateway Graduates in the present fourth-year class at Yale Medical School. There are Gateway kids in many, many places. We're now in the process of moving that program to Boston and I hope that once we launch it here we might get it to schools around the... the country where the need is so very great.

Born in 1925, American Howard Hiatt set up one of the first medical oncology research and training units in the US and has headed up some of America's most prestigious medical institutions. Hiatt attended Harvard College and received his MD from the Harvard Medical School in 1948. He was a member of the team at the Pasteur Institute, Paris, that first identified and described mRNA, and he was among the first to demonstrate mRNA in mammalian cells. From 1991 to 1997, he was Secretary of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, where he began and directs the Academy's Initiatives For Children program. He is also committed to helping disadvantaged people access decent health care.

Listeners: Milton C. Weinstein

Milton C. Weinstein, Ph.D., is the Henry J. Kaiser Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School. At the Harvard School of Public Health he is Academic Director of the Program in Health Decision Science, and Director of the Program on Economic Evaluation of Medical Technology . He is best known for his research on cost-effectiveness of medical practices and for developing methods of economic evaluation and decision analysis in health care. He is a co-developer of the CEPAC (Cost-Effectiveness of Preventing AIDS Complications) computer simulation model, and has conducted studies on prevention and treatment of HIV infections. He is the co-developer of the Coronary Heart Disease Policy Model, which has been used to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of cardiovascular prevention and treatment. He is an author of four books: Decision Making in Health and Medicine: Integrating Evidence and Values; Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine,the report of the Panel of Cost Effectiveness in Health and Medicine; Clinical Decision Analysis; and Hypertension: A Policy Perspective.He has also published more than 200 papers in peer-reviewed medical, public health, and economics journals. He is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, and a recipient of the Award for Career Achievement from the Society for Medical Decision Making. Dr. Weinstein received his A.B. and A.M. in Applied Mathematics (1970), his M.P.P. (1972), and his Ph.D. in Public Policy (1973) from Harvard University.

Tags: Gateway to Higher Education

Duration: 3 minutes, 6 seconds

Date story recorded: September 2006

Date story went live: 24 January 2008