Closing the gaps in accelerating women’s rights: the role of medical students

(Katherine Hanlon, Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr. Ray Salameh, 23 years old, who obtained his Bachelor in Biology as well as an attestation for completing the first year of masters in Molecular Biology at the Lebanese University-Faculty of Sciences. He is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

“In 2019, women comprise 50.5% of all medical school students.” Stated AAMC in a press release about diversity and inclusion. This number is largely due to a cultural acceptance of females in pursuing education in sciences-related fields in the last couple of decades. More and more women are heading for a health care profession with more working hours and higher degrees. And this shift in higher numbers in skilled women workers is creating a wave of more females looking up to them and regarding them as role models.

Why medicine? Well, it’s always been regarded as a man’s work but with higher education standards and more financial independence, females began to develop interest in exploring this field. One for a well respected career, and second to show their males counterparts that they as well are capable of managing such a demanding job.

In 2020, 127 women held seats in the United States Congress, representing 23.7% of the 535 members according to Rutgers University. Let’s take Dr. Kim Schrier a pediatrician running for Congress as an example, in an interview with Good Morning America she stated “ My life, as I envisioned it, was to take care of children and teenagers in my practice and simply retire and then teach medicine,” and continued with “What did we do when we saw divisiveness in our country, when we saw attacks on women’s reproductive health care, when we saw attacks on our health in general? Were we on the correct side of history?” Dr. Kim is an example of how female medical students can in the future pursue these official law making  positions passing laws that not only maintain women’s rights but also exemplify and sustain equality and diversity in all aspects of life.

In the near future these initiatives are essential in preserving female representation and in making sure their voices and concerns are being heard, but for the long run we as humans


should work together each in their own field and personal life in order to ultimately reach a point in time when no one has to fight for their basic rights and where every human being no matter the race or religion is not being discriminated against nor being criticized for their beliefs.

“Human rights are not a privilege conferred by the government, they are every human being’s entitlement by the virtue of his humanity”  (Mother Teresa)