CBS News (Philadelphia): Thomas Jefferson University medical student gives insight into NFL Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative

Feb 13, 2024

Azra Dees, a fourth-year medical student at Thomas Jefferson University’s Sidney Kimmel Medical College, is one of only 30 in the United States selected for the NFL Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative.

“I think the NFL’s initiative has been amazing,” Dees said.

The NFL developed the program to encourage medical students from diverse backgrounds to consider careers in sports medicine.

“We don’t see a lot of medical professionals within that field specifically that look like us,” Dees said.

The American Medical College said under 2% of orthopedic surgeons are Black, and even fewer are Black women.

Dees said it’s important to change that, especially for treating professional football players.

“When you look at people in the NFL, there are a lot of players who look like me or players of color,” Dees said. “I think that it’s definitely important for them to see people who are taking care of them that look like them.”

Dees is a lifelong Eagles fan but for her training rotation, she was placed with the New York Jets to get firsthand experience working in an NFL club setting.

Read the full story at CBS News here.