Group: Women’s Pre-Health Leadership Society
Category of Group: Academic/Honors
Year Founded: 2009
Name: Fareedat Oluyadi
About the group:
The Women’s Pre-Health Leadership Society (WPHLS) is the first-ever women’s honor society at the Homewood campus that exclusively recognizes the achievements and accomplishment of young women pursuing the pre-health science. We are a small and close-knit society consisting of about 30 female undergraduate students who have and continue to demonstrate academic excellence, commitment to community service, and a passion for pre-health studies. Our mission is to provide a forum for young women to inspire and empower one another, while addressing the current healthcare and professional issues facing all women and promoting the next generation of female physicians and scientists.
The society is organized into the general body and the executive board. Each member is assigned to one of the four committees of their choice, each consisting of a Chair. These include the programming committee, the finance committee, the public relations committee, the community engagement committee. Each chair, along with its committee members, collaborates together in the organization and execution of activities and events throughout the year. The executive board holds meetings twice a month and there are 3-4 general body meetings every semester.
What are the special events that WPHLS coordinates?
One of our major events facilitated by the programming committee during the fall is the Women’s Health Awareness Initiative (WHAI). This is an event that occurs throughout the month of October in which members organize workshops to raise awareness on salient issues facing women today. Some of these workshops include the Self-Defense workshop, the Body Image workshop and the Nutrition tables. During the spring, we also hold another major event called the Women’s Pre-Health Leadership Conference. The spring of 2010 marked the first-ever women’s leadership conference held at the Homewood campus. Participants at this event attended break-out sessions, gaining first-hand insight and advice from inspiring female medical professionals at Johns Hopkins.
In addition to the programming events, the community engagement committee holds weekly trips to the Baltimore Rescue Mission Clinic (BMRC) where members are able to gain experience in the medical field while positively impacting the lives of the greater Baltimore community. Furthermore, this committee also frequently collaborates with other groups on and off campus in organizing community service events.
Every committee chair works diligently with its members through the year to organize a variety of campus events as well as outreach events for the general student body.
I was primarily attracted to becoming a member of this organization because it gave me the wonderful opportunity to be one of the founding members of this new and unique organization on campus. The fact that it is a society with relatively small number of members really makes it an intimate one where everyone knows each other and forms enduring relationships.
What makes WPHLS unique?
WPHLS provides a platform for female undergraduate to exchange ideas and experiences, mentor one another, and receive guidance throughout the medical school preparation process. Because it is such an intimate society, each member is a leader in some way and contributes significantly to the continued success and progression of the organization. In addition, our organization is closely intertwined with the wonderful advisors at the Pre-professional advising office, allowing the opportunity to get to know our advisors on a more personal level. As a result, we get first hand advice, mentoring and helpful tips to helps us throughout our journey toward obtaining a career in the healthcare profession.
This society has made a tremendous impact on my Hopkins experience so far. Having an organization that is able to mentor and inspire you is something I cherish as a member of WPHLS. It has provided me with the support and confidence to tackle the challenging journey of a pre-med student at Hopkins. Also, being surrounded by a group of driven and intelligent individuals has inspired me to challenge my horizon and put myself out there. It has really built my self-confidence and developed my leadership skills. It has also given me the opportunity to build lasting relationships with wonderful classmates that I would never have been acquainted with.
How can freshmen get involved?
Freshmen are encouraged to become involved from the minute they set foot on campus by attending the various WPHLS events that are open to the entire Homewood community. Opportunities to gain membership to WPHLS begin during the spring semester of their first year, but attending fall programming events is a great way to show interest in the group. Membership applications open at the end of the fall semester and the deadline for submission usually falls during the first month of the spring semester. The applications are accessible on our website ( http://jhu.edu/wphls/) and they are submitted to the Pre-Professional advising office. Applicants are notified of their acceptance during the middle of the spring semester.