Congressman Raul Ruiz to Speak at “Future Physician Leaders” Reception

UCR Palm Desert event on Aug. 18, 2016, to feature poster display and offer students opportunity to network with local healthcare professionals

Congressman Raul Ruiz.

PALM DESERT, Calif. – Congressman Raul Ruiz, M.D., will address more than 170 students, physicians and health care leaders at the Future Physician Leaders (FPL) end-of-program reception on Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016, at the University of California, Riverside Palm Desert Center.

Hosted by the UC Riverside School of Medicine, the reception is by invitation and will begin at 6 p.m. at the center, which is located at 75-080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, Calif.  Members of the news media are invited to attend and cover the networking reception; RSVP at (951) 827-6090 or

In addition to Ruiz, the School of Medicine’s Deborah Deas, the Mark and Pam Rubin Dean and Chief Executive Officer for Clinical Affairs, and Neal Schiller, the senior associate dean of student affairs, will speak at the reception.

Ruiz, who now represents California’s 36th District, founded the FPL program in 2009. Two years later he was appointed senior associate dean for community engagement and partnerships at the UCR School of Medicine. He also served as an emergency medicine physician in the Coachella Valley. The community-based, collaborative FPL program is designed to develop home-grown, high-quality physician and healthcare leaders who will serve the inland Southern California community with social responsibility.

This summer, as part of the community service component, 170 students spent seven weeks working in teams to develop, implement, and evaluate their own community health projects. Twenty projects were developed between the Coachella Valley, Riverside/San Bernardino and Temecula programs reaching more than 1230 community members. Community health project topics ranged from mental health and skin cancer awareness to resource guidance for breast cancer, oral hygiene and sleep deprivation awareness and even childhood obesity.

Besides these projects, the FPL program consists of summer shadowing rotations as well as the leadership lecture series and workshops, in which local healthcare leaders, physicians, and faculty members present on topics in medicine, career development, and healthcare issues. The summer shadowing program, allowed 45 students to shadow physicians in primary care clinics, medical centers and other health care settings for four hours, once a week, over the course of six weeks.

The FPL reception will recognize and celebrate the work and accomplishment of more than 170 FPL students from programs in the Coachella Valley, Riverside/San Bernardino and Temecula and provide them with valuable mentoring and networking opportunities with local healthcare providers.

Students will present posters detailing their FPL Community Health Projects from 6 to 7 p.m.

Organizations that have supported this pipeline program throughout the years include:

  • Arrowhead Regional Medical Center
  • Borrego Community Health Foundation
  • City of Temecula
  • Clinicas De Salud Del Pueblo
  • CVEP’s Pathways to Success
  • Desert AIDS Project
  • Desert Healthcare District
  • Desert Regional Medical Center
  • Eisenhower Medical Center
  • Get Tested Coachella Valley
  • Health Career Connections
  • Riverside University Health System
  • Planned Parenthood
  • UCR Health
  • UCR School of Medicine
  • Volunteers in Medicine

Organizations local to the Coachella Valley are scheduled to be present at the event.

Support for the FPL program is provided by Kaiser Foundation Hospitals.

Media Contact

Tel: (951) 827-6050
Twitter: UCR_Sciencenews

Additional Contacts

Media RSVP
Tel: (951) 827-6090

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