Health Literacy: Health Literacy Fellowship
The Mayor's Office hosts a fellowship for a limited number of highly-qualified medical students in New York City. Participating students learn about health literacy and improve their communication and teaching skills. They also help adults to learn English and improve their literacy skills by becoming teachers in adult literacy classrooms. The fellowship connects adult learners and medical students to build partnerships and create greater understanding between community members and future physicians.
The fellowship has three parts:
During the summer, fellows work in community-based adult education programs three-four days a week for eight weeks. Under the supervision of adult educators, they teach lessons designed to help adults improve their functional literacy skills while learning more about health. Programs offer a range of instruction, from basic literacy to GED preparation and English as a second language. Sites are located throughout the City.
Health Policy Seminars and Clinical Site Visits
Fellows participate in a weekly health literacy seminar with leading physicians, medical researchers, and literacy experts. Fellows also take field trips to New York City's top health care institutions to see how clinical practice can address health literacy challenges.
Following the summer, fellows will have the opportunity to participate in a monthly health policy dinner seminar where they will interact with clinicians, policy makers, and researchers who are making health literacy a priority in medicine, politics, and education.
Fellows are connected to expert researchers to conduct research or demonstration projects to advance health literacy knowledge and practice. In the past, fellows have assessed the readability of hospital documents, adapted health surveys for low-literate populations, and created health education videos. Fellows are assisted in identifying opportunities for publication and conference presentations. At the end of the summer, fellows present their teaching and research experiences at a conference that brings together medical school faculty and researchers, literacy professionals, and government officials.