The Road to Urban Health: Geetika Srivastava

Many different roads lead students to NEOMED. Geetika Srivastava, a first-year College of Medicine student, found her way to the University via the NEOMED-Cleveland State University Partnership for Urban Health program.

After graduating from the University of Dayton, Srivastava (her name is pronounced GHEE-ti-kah Shri-VAS-tav, with a silent vowel at the end of her last name) took a few years off, looking for a niche in health care where she could work with underserved populations. The CSU/NEOMED post-baccalaureate/M.D. program stood out to her. That particular pathway allows qualified students with a bachelor’s degree to complete a two-year program of pre-medicine science courses and urban health courses, then begin the College of Medicine program in Rootstown.

Srivastava is excited that NEOMED empowers her to explore a passion for urban medicine and serving the underprivileged. As a member of the Urban Health Interest Group, she is learning about the social determinants of health and how these cultural and socioeconomic factors differ from the social determinants of rural health.

“Rural health has a lot to do with a lack of resources. Urban health and medicine tend to deal more with social injustices,’’ says Srivastava. “We focus a lot on that and plan on holding a panel and speaker events based off that. “

Real-world projects

The first-year student likes participating in community events with personal meaning, such as Advocacy Week with the American Medical Association-NEOMED Chapter. She helped organize events for the week’s events centered around opioid addiction—a crisis in her hometown city of Dayton.

“That, for me, was one of the most meaningful experiences I got to be a part of,’’ says Srivastava.

Close ties

What stands out to her about NEOMED?

“I think the community, the friendships I’ve made here, the connections I’ve made with faculty, the many organizations that I get to be a part of,’’ says Srivastava. Helping to organize the Mr. NEOMED contest to benefit   is one recent example. Another is MLK Day of Service, she said.

“I think the partnership provides a lot of opportunities. Cleveland is a wonderful city to practice medicine in.”


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