The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship (ASF) of Alabama has announced the 2020-21 class of Alabama Schweitzer Fellows, and four students were selected from UAB School of Medicine. Maahum Kamal, Abigayle Kraus, Sheila Mallenahalli, and Jean Paul Osula will spend the next fifteen months learning to address social factors that impact health, while developing lifelong leadership skills. They will be serving as fellows alongside 13 other students from Samford University, Auburn University, The University of Alabama, UAB School of Health Professions, UAB School of Public Health, UAB School of Nursing, and UAB School of Dentistry.
“These 17 students have joined us at a critical juncture in our organization’s history,” said Kristin Boggs, executive director of the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship of Alabama. “Thanks to the support from local philanthropic partners, we have added three months to a previously year-long experience. We are impressed by the willingness of these students to devote more time to using data to accurately understand what organizations and citizens value. Furthermore, we are excited to see how a broader diversity of disciplinary perspectives will enhance their appreciation for interdisciplinary teamwork. These students rose to the top from our most selective application and interview process ever.”
Schweitzer Fellows create and implement service projects that address health disparities in under-resourced communities. According to a press release disseminated on Dec. 13 by The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship of Alabama, “Each project is implemented in collaboration with a community-based health and/or social service organization. The exact projects of the 2020 Fellows will be determined through a three-month exploration of needs, community assets, and evidence-based models for interventions. Many community organizations will participate in the training program as co-educators. ASF of Alabama will announce in April 2020 the specific projects and community partners who will collaborate with the Fellows.”
It is anticipated that the 17 Alabama Fellows will be joined by approximately 200 other 2020-21 Schweitzer Fellows working at program sites around the United States in early spring, the traditional start of Schweitzer Fellowships nationally. Upon completion of their Fellowship year, the 2020-21 Alabama Schweitzer Fellows will become Schweitzer Fellows for Life and join a vibrant network of more than 3,500 Schweitzer alumni who are committed to addressing the health needs of underserved people throughout their careers.