UCSF Medical Student Kyle Lakatos Awarded Association of American Medical Colleges Scholarship
On November 11, UCSF medical student Kyle Lakatos received the inaugural Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)/Darrell G. Kirch, MD Scholarship. Through an extremely competitive, multi-faceted review process, Kyle was selected for this prestigious scholarship because of his exemplary record of community service and leadership.
The scholarship, named after the past AAMC president awards $10,000 to eight first-year underrepresented minority students who demonstrate community service and leadership. The selected students are eligible to renew the scholarship for an additional three years upon meeting renewal criteria. The scholars were honored at the AAMC’s Learn Serve Lead 2019 Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.
A Bay Area native, Kyle has focused on community-driven health initiatives that connect policies to people. His undergraduate work focused on biochemistry at UC Santa Cruz, where he was active as a student leader and organizer. He then expanded his systems-level thinking and analytical work with a Master of Science in biophysics at the California Institute of Technology.
This award was certainly a tremendous honor, to receive national recognition for the community engagement work I have been doing here in San Francisco.
UCSF Medical Student
“This award was certainly a tremendous honor, to receive national recognition for the community engagement work I have been doing here in San Francisco,” Lakatos said. “More humbling was the opportunity to meet and hear about the work other students are doing across the country to increase the opportunities for everyone to have access to health and healing spaces. It is great to be connected to other future leaders, potential collaborators, and friends who I will get to work alongside with, in crafting a future of medicine that supports everyone.”
Prior to his pursuit of medicine, Kyle was a professor of chemistry and a vaccine researcher for the global health nonprofit PATH in Seattle. Teaching college-level chemistry courses during the evening showed Kyle how to connect mentorship and scholarship with people in underserved, urban areas. In 2017, when Kyle shadowed providers in a pediatric hospital in Argentina, he found his calling to pursue medicine. While preparing for medical school, he taught high school math and science and served as the Social Justice and LGBTQ Club facilitator. He was also a medical scribe at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, assisting the provider during patient interactions, and he volunteered with a free services program called Magnet at the health and wellness hub Strut. By providing HIV test counseling with patients undergoing sexual health screenings, he was able to directly support patients who identify as LGBTQ+.
“I would like to thank my mentors for bringing this scholarship to my attention, encouraging me to apply, and who continue to provide their ongoing support and guidance,” Lakatos said.
Lakatos has worked with city and state officials to examine program adoption and expansion in health care contexts. He is now focused on sustainable collaborations between neighborhood hubs and Zuckerberg San Francisco General, helping to lead project design, scope and execution while engaging communities and clinicians. Today, Kyle is an aspiring physician and politician with ambitions to create a culture of health that emphasizes the expansion of community-based systems of care.