The Perceived Value of Same-Sex or Same-Race Mentors and Role Models in Academic Medicine


This study aims to describe the perception of need for same-sex and same-race mentorship and role models at evolving stages of a medical career and to explore whether these differences affect career choices within the field of medicine. A total of 326 medical students, 309 resident physicians, and 200 faculty a”ending physicians at the University of California, Davis School of Medicine completed an online survey focused on their perceived value of same-sex and same-race mentorship throughout their stages of medical training and practice. The top three factors influencing specialty choice were lifestyle, time commitment, and supportive department. Although most respondents did not believe same-sex or same-race mentors or role models influenced their specialty choice, there were significant differences in the perceived importance and value of gender or race concordance between male versus female and white versus nonwhite populations. (Journal of Surgical Orthopaedic Advances 33(1):041- 048, 2024)

Key words: mentor, role model, diversity, underrepresented groups, academic medicine, specialty choice

Kryls Ong Sitco Domalaon, MD, USAF, MC; Lydia Jeannette Henderson, BA; Soo Kyoung Kim, MD; Holly Leshikar, MD, MPH; Sandra L. Taylor, PhD; Yueju Li, MS; and Robert M. Szabo, MD, MPH