A “mentor” is an experienced and trusted advisor. A “mentee” is an individual who is advised by a mentor. As mentors, we help others by sharing our seasoned experiences. As mentees, our mentors give us a glimpse of our future. But what happens when there are not enough health professional mentors?
Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar, University of California, Los Angeles
Dr. Efrain Talamantes is a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at the University of California, Los Angeles and Department of Veteran Affairs where he is completing a master’s degree in health policy and management, while conducting community-based participatory research on improving health care access for the uninsured and increasing diversity in the healthcare workforce. He completed his internal medicine residency training at the University of California, Davis where he participated in the Transforming Education and Community Health (TEACH) program, a primary care training program for physicians interested in caring for the medically underserved and was also the medical director for Clinica Tepati, a free clinic for the uninsured in Sacramento, California.
Dr. Talamantes is the son of two Mexican immigrants from Jalisco. He grew up in Norwalk, California and was the first in his family to graduate from high school thanks to the Puente Project. His pathway into medicine began during his undergraduate studies at the University of California, Los Angeles where he majored in psychobiology. It was then that his life was transformed through his volunteer work with Chicanos/Latinos for Community Medicine (CCM), a student group that provides free health education and outreach to Latinos and other underserved patients in Los Angeles. CCM connected him with the mentorship to excel as a pre-medical student, and more importantly as a leader. Dr. Talamantes received his medical degree from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and obtained a master’s degree in business administration with a focus on organization in management at the Emory Goizueta School of Business.
Dr. Talamantes is involved in various regional mentoring initiatives and is passionate about enhancing leadership and diversity in the healthcare workforce. With the support of the various key student leaders and alumni from the CCM and the Latino Medical Student Association he founded Alliance in Menotrship, a non-profit organization based in Los Angeles, California and creators of www.MiMentor.org, an online virtual mentoring website for the next generation of healthcare leaders that will serve our communities.
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