Dr. Kendra Outler, MD from My Uzima Health & Wellness interviewed Kylar Wiltz, a third-year medical student at Howard University Medical School. Coming from a large family in rural Louisiana, this future doctor, Bachelor of Science degree in Biology at Xavier University in New Orleans Lousiania. He states Xavier provided him with the nurturing and encouragement to continue to work towards medical school.
Kylar Wiltz, is so dynamic that he is taking year off between his final year of medical school to earn his Master of Business Administration (MBA) at Howard University. As if that is not enough, he has completede a Master of Public Administration at Eastern Illinois University. He continues to active in the community both in his hometown of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana and here in Washtington, DC.
This doctor in training admits that medical school is not an easy journey. From applying to get in, classes and clinical rotations, to matching into residency, there is a huge commitment necessary to become a doctor. This commitment is not just in time or energy, but in finances as well. According to Dr. Outler, only approximately 6.5% of medical students enrolled are of Black in the United States. Black men represent the lowest number of all students going to medical school. Part of this low statistic is because of the socioeconomic challenges that come with trying to get into medical school and staying in school and residency for years. As Kylar Wiltz states, there are some that have to ask themselves, “Do I place more emphasis on being able to get a meal tonight or do I place more emphasis on studying for these tests?”
Unfortunately, many Black students also lack deep resources afforded to many of their peers. “A lot of our Black kids understand what they want to be early on,” Wiltz states. “The problem is, how do I get from point A to point B, and point B to point C while facing all of this adversity on a road that I don’t have any guidance or leadership for someone who’s actually been there before?” It is very important for any young college student no matter what they want to do to surround themselves with mentors. Strong mentors in your field can help you when the road looks impossible.
To learn more about Kylar Wiltz’s journey to becoming a medical doctor as well as the disparities faced by Black students, listen to Thoughts Along the Way with Kylar Wiltz, a Howard University Medical Student.
This podcast forms part of a series. We’ll post the links below.