UMass Chan Medical School registrar honored for efforts to diversify research and health professions
UMass Chan Medical School Registrar Michael Baker, MA, has been named to the 2021 Biomedical Science Careers Program Honor Roll in recognition of his 13 years of involvement with the program. Baker was recognized during the annual BSCP Evening of Hope fundraiser held virtually on Sept. 22.
“This is well deserved recognition of Michael’s dedication to mentoring our students,” said Sonia Chimienti, MD, former associate dean for student life, who nominated Baker for the honor. “He has given so much of himself, usually under the radar, to recruiting and supporting a diverse student body.”
Baker was recruited to UMass Chan in 2002 to standardize and enhance operations in the Office of the Registrar. Performing essential functions mostly behind the scenes, the registrar is responsible for rigorously maintaining the accuracy, integrity, privacy and security of all academic records for current and former students. These include enrollment verification, registrations, transcripts, and class and grade rosters. Previously Baker was the registrar and associate director for admissions at Meharry Medical College.
The Biomedical Science Careers Program was founded in 1991 by Joan Reede, MD, MPH, MS, MBA, professor of medicine and dean for diversity and community partnership at Harvard Medical School. This year’s event celebrated the program’s 30 years of closing the equity gap for people of color and disadvantaged individuals in an effort to diversify the biomedical sciences and health professions while helping employers meet their need for a diverse workforce. The program supports academically outstanding students, particularly those of African American, Hispanic and American Indian/Alaskan Native descent.
Baker has been among the many professionals from basic and clinical sciences, medicine, public health, academia, human resources, and the biopharmaceutical industry who have volunteered their time and expertise to BSCP. In addition to serving on the BSCP Planning Committee for several years, he has been a panelist and facilitator for skills workshops, including applying to medical and graduate school and preparing for interviews; conducted orientation for high school students; recruited students, faculty and administrators to serve as advisors and mentors for the BSCP; and managed the Resource Room where students meet representatives from schools, businesses and government agencies.
UMass Chan students benefit from these and numerous other BSCP programs, including scholarships, scientific symposia, career development conferences and resource directories.
“It’s been a joy and honor working with the BSCP program and reaching out to students pursuing their dreams of becoming health care professionals and researchers,” Baker said. “Outreach programs such as the HMS BSCP and the Worcester Pipeline programs provide valuable tools that position students to be competitive applicants in their future endeavors.”