Paul Yerkes, M.D., a second-year resident with Christiana Care Family Medicine, is one of only 30 scholarship winners from across the country selected to participate in the 2017-18 Family Medicine Leads Emerging Leader Institute.
Funded by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Foundation, the initiative aims to identify and develop family medicine residents and medical students who exhibit leadership potential.
“Future physicians like Dr. Yerkes are the up-and-coming leaders with the power to transform health care in America,” said AAFP Foundation President Hughes Melton, M.D. “This unique leadership opportunity will help him build the skills and experience that will accelerate his ability to impact his patients, communities and the health care environment overall.”
Over the course of the year, scholarship winners work with a mentor to complete a project on one of three tracks: Policy & Public Health Leadership, Personal & Practice Leadership and Philanthropic & Mission-Driven Leadership.
Dr. Yerkes, who served eight years in the U.S. Marine Corps, including a tour in Iraq as a combat engineer and lifesaver, will focus on a Policy & Public Health Leadership proposal that addresses the mental health needs of veterans.
“Through this scholarship, I hope to be exposed to experienced leaders within family medicine and to gain insight into the issues they have encountered while driving change, as well as the strategies they have used to overcome these obstacles,” said Dr. Yerkes, who grew up in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.
Dr. Yerkes will receive a $1,000 scholarship toward travel expenses to attend both the AAFP National Conference of Family Medicine Residents and Medical Students as well as the Family Medicine Leads Emerging Leadership Institute.
At the end of the program, one Best Project Award will be named for each of the three tracks, which will be showcased at the 2018 national conference.
Dr. Yerkes’ appointment continues the tradition of a Christiana Care resident being chosen for each class of this competitive national leadership development program since its inception three years ago.
Previous Christiana Care leadership institute participants are:
- 2016: Ashley Panichelli, M.D. Her project focused on patients’ understanding of and interest in discussing end-of-life care as part of routine primary care.
- 2015: Mandy Cooper, D.O. Her project involved reinvigorating didactics and received the Best Project Award for the Personal Practice & Leadership track.