“What do you want to be when you grow up?”
My parents always asked me this. I learned later that this was about creating a vision and expectation of the future.
Now I am Dr Renee Crichlow, a family physician working and teaching family medicine in underserved North Minneapolis, and I ask every child I see, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
Many answer doctor or nurse and yet in the medical school and the residency applications I rarely saw any kids from the neighborhood. My co-worker Shailey Prasad, MD, MPH, and I knew this was a complex problem not to be solved overnight.
We decided with the support of our department chair, Mac Baird, MD, MS, to build The Ladder, a structured health care pipeline mentorship program that incorporates hands-on science fun with values and character development designed to facilitate the development of lifelong learners and leaders interested in health care careers.