Class of 2021

Class of 2021

Andrea Avalos, MD
Drexel University College of Medicine

Andrea was born and raised in Peru, she then moved to Connecticut where she finished high school. She graduated from the Boston University with a major in Biology and a minor in French. She worked and volunteered in the Boston area until moving to Philadelphia for medical school. During her time in Philly, she discovered her passion for primary care and community service. She volunteered with Puentes de Salud, a multiservice medical clinic serving the Latino community in South Philadelphia. She also served in the board of LMSA at Drexel leading events for the local community, students interested in Spanish interpreting, Cinco de Mayo celebrations, and attending conferences. Andrea thoroughly enjoys finding foodie gems, visiting art galleries, painting, watching detective shows on TV, dancing, and meeting people from different cultures. She is thrilled to have matched at Montefiore and excited to call the Bronx home.

Chelsea Brown, MD
New York University School of Medicine

Chelsea Brown was raised in Long Island, New York and attended the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education (CUNY Med), and accelerated BS/MD program. During her time at Sophie Davis, Chelsea learned about social determinants of health and community medicine, and served as a teaching assistant for a community medicine class conducting community health assessments for zip codes in NYC/NY State. She explored delivery of healthcare abroad as a medical assistant in Cusco, Peru and San Lucas, Guatemala. Chelsea completed her clinical training at NYU School of Medicine, where she volunteered at the student run free clinic, providing women’s health services to uninsured patients. She completed a scholarly concentration project piloting a patient navigator model for undocumented Latino immigrant patients seeking primary and specialty care in the NYC public hospital system (NYC H+H). Her project interest came from a relationship with an immigrant-led immigrant rights organization that demonstrated a health need. Chelsea also pursued her interests in Women’s health by volunteering for the NYC Planned Parenthood Activist Council, and served as a healthcare escort/community canvasser. In her free time, Chelsea enjoys traveling, reading, cooking, and spending time with her family/ dogs.

Ernest Egu, MD
Cooper Medical School of Rowan University

Ernest was born in Sedalia, MO but grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Rutgers University with a B.S. in Cell Biology and Neuroscience and a minor in Africana Studies. He then attended medical school at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (CMSRU) in Camden, NJ. Ernest enjoys community outreach and volunteering. During his time at Rutgers, Ernest volunteered as a math and science tutor for underrepresented high school students. At CMSRU, he was the founding president of their Student National Medical Association chapter where, while president, they won Community Service Chapter of the year and Regional Chapter of the year. At CMSRU, he also volunteered at underserved elementary and high school outreach programs where he mentored and tutored at-risk youth. Additionally, Ernest served as a student leader of Cooper’s student-run free clinic. His interests are in poverty and gaps in access to healthcare, women’s health, and community-based medicine.

Christel Francois, MD
Drexel University College of Medicine

I was born and raised in Haiti, completed high school in New York and went to college at the University of Maryland. During my undergraduate career, I worked as a pharmacy technician and as a teaching assistant. After graduating, I spent a year working as a medical assistant. While at Drexel University, COM, I was a co-coordinator and a health advocate at one of the Health Outreach Program at Eliza Shirley, a temporary shelter for women and children. I also volunteered with Drexel Mentoring and Pipeline program where I created workshops on careers in medicine and human anatomy and an exercise in the simulation center for high school students interested in medicine. Additionally, I also volunteered in Haiti during the summers with an organization called Tikay Haiti. My interests are in women’s health, HIV medicine, public health and global health. I speak Haitian Creole, French and basic Spanish. My hobbies include cooking, salsa dancing, going to the gym and Zumba.

Julie Hyppolite, MD
Drexel University College of Medicine

Julie was born and raised in Central New Jersey. She attended the University of Notre Dame where she studied Political Science and Pre-Professional Studies in Medicine. While there, she was involved with the Center for Social Concerns and had the opportunity to work with homeless populations and local organizers. She also spent time tutoring and mentoring youth in the South Bend Juvenile Justice Center and from the city high schools, spurring her passion for working with adolescents. She then attended Drexel University College of Medicine. She continued working with adolescents as coordinator and mentor for the DUCOM Mentoring and Pipeline Program, with the mission of exposing minority high school students to the health care field. She also spent time working with Drexel’s student run clinics providing free services to homeless women and children and adults with history of drug use. In the summer after her first year, she worked with the Notre Dame Haiti Program in Leogane, Haiti to assess the marketing strategies of a manufactured salt product used to eradicate lymphatic filariasis. After completing her third year, she took a year to complete a Masters in Public Health with concentration in Health Management and Policy. Her coursework focused on advocacy, human rights, and a global health elective in Senegal and Gambia. Her master’s thesis involved creating group medical visits at Drexel’s family medicine office. The group visits focus on obesity and officially launched in October 2017. In her free time, Julie enjoys listening to music, live concerts, sunshine, dancing, and watching Netflix. Julie is extremely excited to work among the inspiring residents and faculty of Montefiore.

Tequilla Manning, MD
University of Kansas School of Medicine

A graduate from the University of Kansas Medical Center, Tequilla Manning, has a passion and commitment for working with underserved communities. After graduating from Grinnell College in 2011, her curiosity about the relationship between poverty and health led her to circumnavigate the globe with Semester at Sea, a program offered by the University of Virginia. She traveled to fourteen countries over several months, volunteering with Habitat for Humanity and Operation Hunger. When she returned to the United States, she established Starkville Bridges Out of Poverty, a non- profit organization located in her hometown in Starkville, Mississippi that addresses the needs of working class individuals. As a medical student, she served as the clinical director of the Bulldoc Healthcare Clinic, a school-based clinic at Wyandotte High School, located in one of the poorest counties in Kansas. She connected medical students with volunteer physicians to provide healthcare services to diverse students. In 2014, she received a grant to conduct research in the areas of sex work, LGBTQ, and government policy in Costa Rica. Recently, she received the Guffey Award for her contribution to the university archives through her research on Dr. Marjorie Cates, the first African American female to graduate from the University of Kansas Medical Center. Because of her research, KU Medical Center changed the name of a medical society from Wahl, a physician and Dean at the time who actively and outwardly prohibited African American students from the medical center, to the Cates Society in 2018 to commemorate her medical education and successful career as a step towards enhancing diversity and inclusion at the medical school. She enjoys writing and has made contributions to the magazines in-Training and in- House. She also will complete her Master of Public Health from George Washington University. Dr. Manning plans to practice in an underserved community and address the healthcare needs of vulnerable populations both nationally and globally through research and medicine.

Anthony Okolo, MD
Medical School: Albany Medical College

Anthony (or Tony) was born in Lagos, Nigeria before moving to Brooklyn, NY at the age of 4. He then returned to Nigeria for boarding school before finally settling in Valley Stream, Long Island. Tony completed his undergraduate studies at the City College of New York as a student of the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, a combined B.S/ M.D program. During that time, he served as a Colin Powell Leadership Fellow and through collaborations with the NYCDOH and the WE ACT Center for Environmental Justice, worked on policy advocacy and community projects promoting health access for West Harlem residents. Tony was also active in student government, and through his role spearheaded multiple community health fairs in West Harlem. Tony graduated with a B.S in Biomedical sciences, along with dual minors in Public Policy and Economics. In medical school, Tony was elected to the Gold Humanism Honor Society, and served as a national team member of Primary Care Progress, an organization dedicated to revitalizing Primary Care across medical institutions nationwide. In that role, he has worked with medical students across the country to promote school curriculums that highlight Primary Care and Interdisciplinary training. Tony spent most of his final year of medical school working at the Wright Center for Primary Care, where he collaborated with an interdisciplinary team to address social determinants of health for Northeastern Pennsylvania residents, and conducted community wide interventions. Tony loves to eat (anything) and looks forward to serving the Bronx community, both during residency and afterwards as a National Health Service Corp.

Joshua Ononuju, MD
Eastern Virginia Medical School

Joshua was born in Tallahassee, Florida but was raised in North Central Florida. He eventually made his way back to Tallahassee to attend Florida A & M University where he studied Pharmacy. After graduating, he worked in a variety of clinical and leadership positions in underserved and rural communities in the Midwest. He attended medical school at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia and is a National Medical Fellowships alumnus of the Primary Care Leadership Program. He is a firm believer in Ubuntu–the definition of humanity embracing the connectedness between individuals and communities–and the importance of building strong community ties. In his spare time, Joshua enjoys photography, science fiction, traveling, and experimenting with new recipes.

Robert Rock, MD
Yale School of Medicine

Robert was born and raised in Queens, New York. He graduated cum laude from New York University (NYU) with a Bachelor of Arts in Art History. During his undergraduate years, he was president of the Haitian American Student Association and founder of the Opportunity Programs Mentoring Initiative for students within the Higher Education Opportunities Program (HEOP) and the Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (CSTEP) at NYU. Robert was a volunteer for Operation Dream Catchers at NYU, helping to collect medical supplies that students delivered to the public hospital system of Guyana. Robert also served as a volunteer research assistant at the Center for Healthful Behavior Change at NYU Medical School where he assisted in participant recruitment at barbershops and churches across New York City for community-based research projects. After this, Robert attended the Yale School of medicine where he co-developed an elective course in social medicine, domestic health equity, and health advocacy, called US Health Justice (USHJ), for medical, nursing, and physician associate students. He went on to work with graduate students from across the university in forming the multidisciplinary USHJ Collaborative, which works to educate and strengthen the growing health justice community. In his fourth year, Robert was named a 2017 Pisacano Scholar. He is excited to return home and ecstatic to join the RPSM family in serving the Bronx community."

Rashaud Senior, MD
The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University

Rashaud, despite having moved a few times during his childhood, is from (Money Earnin') Mount Vernon, NY. After graduating from Mt Vernon High School, he earned his degree from Harvard College, where he was a part of several black student groups and a mentoring program that helped high-achieving, low-income high school students become competitive college applicants. He then worked at Steward Health Care Network, the physician network for the similarly-named Boston-based healthcare company, as the jack-of-all-trades data analyst for the Quality Team, under the Population Health Team. There, he developed a strong appreciation for the ability of healthcare systems, business negotiations, and primary care to affect health outcomes for various patient populations, especially the poor and underserved. Rashaud attended the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, where he was involved with various efforts surrounding social justice for patients, and where he sought opportunities to learn more about the ever-changing healthcare landscape and its relation to both health systems and population health. Rashaud is thrilled to come back home to serve the communities that helped shape who he is today. He enjoys playing soccer, gym time, martial arts, awful jokes, trying to eat healthy, eating his family's home-cooked Jamaican food, and going out with his friends. He's also wondering how often he'll bump into Montefiore employees who knew/ worked with his parents who will shout, "Oh, you're Patrick and Latchmi's son?! I knew you from when you were a little baby!" (He's still not quite sure how to respond beyond smiling and nodding his head saying "Yeah, that's me") "