Student Partnerships in Chicago’s South Side Improve Community Health—University of Chicago Medicine’s Summer Service Partnership

Youth on Chicago's South Side face critical public health issues, including obesity, violence and sexual health. As director of the University of Chicago Medicine’s Summer Service Partnership (SSP), Kohar Jones, M.D., partners medical students on teams with local youth to promote community health and address health disparities.

University of Chicago students from the Pritzker School of Medicine, Social Services Administration and pre-health college students work with high school students from the South Side on a tiered mentoring summer service-learning program. SSP empowers youth to address the social determinants of health through a community health service project, through which they learn critical skills in teamwork and community engagement. 

From addressing obesity through bilingual nutrition classes at a local middle school to creating a YouTube video where teens teach teens about safe sex, SSP mobilizes youth to be a voice for health in their communities, while transforming the training of our future primary care workforce