The effect of community based-academic partnerships on student knowledge about plastic surgery and interest in medicine

Academic Article


  • Background Programs specific to plastic surgery are necessary to dispel common myths and increase interest in the field. In a previous publication by the authors, a community outreach program was developed for these reasons for middle school students. In the current study, we expanded on the previous research and collected objective data to assess students' initial interest in medicine and knowledge about plastic surgery, compared to their interest and knowledge afterward. Methods The program previously developed by the authors was modified and performed for the students at various community outreach events and included a PowerPoint presentation, case didactics, and hands-on activities. A test about plastic surgery and questionnaire about interest in the medical field and becoming a doctor was given to each student before and after the program. Results One hundred seventy-nine students participated in the program from 2009 to 2013. The pretest mean score was 6.50 of 12 questions whereas the posttest mean score was 9.72 (P = <0.001). After participation in the program, 27% of students that answered "no" or "unsure" about interest in the medical field on the pretest changed their answer to "yes," on the posttest, and 17% of students that answered "no" or "unsure" about interest in becoming a doctor on the pretest changed their answer to "yes," on the posttest (P = <0.001). Conclusions A plastic surgery community outreach program is beneficial in increasing students' interest in the field of medicine as a whole, and more specifically in the field of plastic surgery.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Sillah NM; Miller HJ; Weis Sadoski TL; Larson JD; Bentz ML; King TW
  • Start Page

  • 708
  • End Page

  • 712
  • Volume

  • 74
  • Issue

  • 6