Purpose & Objectives

The Latino Health Symposium is MOLA’s all-membership educational event. The event will gather medical experts and provide educational opportunities for physician, health professional, and student  attendees. In addition, an academic poster session will be a unique opportunity for participants to demonstrate their innovative scholarly achievements. Finally, there will be networking opportunities including a mentorship event which will mark an annual face-to-face mentorship encounter between MOLA mentors and mentees and a way for new attendees to get to know MOLA and develop opportunities for collaboration.

The 2019 Symposium theme is “Moving Forward,” translated in Spanish “Hacia adelante” to signify the purpose of this academic event in defining, directing, and disseminating positive strategies and best-practices for Latino health and advancement.

The main objectives for participants promise an impact in Latino health with regards to Education, Research, Innovation, and Collaboration and would be summarized as follows. At the conclusion of the event, participants will be able to:

  • Identify how Latino physicians and health professionals can create positive impact to address gaps and barriers in Latino health.
  • Describe innovative strategies that are being realized in current academic work to improve Latino health and Latino health professional advancement.
  • Create connections with fellow health professionals and students as a step in future collaborative work, mentorship opportunities, and career development.


The target audience will include students, residents, and attending physicians and will provide educational opportunities on issues affecting Hispanic/Latino health and health disparities. The symposium will also include the larger MOLA community which includes health care professionals, such as advanced clinical practitioners, public health professionals, and behavioral health specialists. Focused sessions will target specific audience members at various level of training and practice. The expectation based on prior attendance and trends in MOLA membership and event participation, would be an audience number of 250 attendees.


The Latino Health Symposium is the culmination of MOLA’s annual programming by linking all of our programs, providing a forum for showcasing our annual outcomes, and creating an academic forum where Latino health issues and Latino physicians, students, and researchers are the focus.

Event Speakers, Moderators, Oral Presenters, and Scholars

Gap Analysis

In the past 30 years, the number of Hispanic/Latino U.S. physicians per 100,000 people has declined by 22% (Sánchez, et al. 2015).  This means that while the general Hispanic/Latino population grows dramatically, their representation in the medical community is shrinking. According to data from the Association of American Medical Colleges, the number of matriculants and graduates of U.S. medical schools that identify as Hispanic/Latino has remained stagnant at 5% of students over the past 20 years. (http:/www.aamcdiversityfactsandfigures2016.org/) As a professional organization with partnerships that span community organizations, academic centers, medical schools, hospitals, and others, the Medical Organization for Latino Advancement (MOLA) is committed to make an impact on these figures.

Research shows that underrepresented minorities are more likely to practice in areas that are underserved and underrepresented (Xierali, 2018) highlighting yet another reason why more Latinos need to be recruited due to their unique capacity for impactful research, clinical practice, and leadership. Multiple components need to be influenced to successfully “move the needle” on this complex problem in U.S. medical education and practice, which is why MOLA is addressing the issue from multiple perspectives: Mentorship to support the dreams of young students starting at high school level and beyond; Public health to provide patient navigation and health screenings in needy communities; Wellness to prevent physician and trainee burnout and promote a healthy lifestyle; Advocacy to work together to impact change on a health policy level; and Education & Research to highlight the work of Latino investigators and provide education on best-practices for Latino health to all providers.

The MOLA Latino Health Symposium is our organization’s annual venue for discussing, debating, and collaborating on all of the above topics and using them as an educational opportunity to showcase our talented MOLA members’ scholarly efforts and learn together how we can better care for Hispanic/Latino patients. We hope that the Symposium is only the beginning to open doors for many Latino investigators, educators and leaders to publish and further disseminate their work in other local, regional, national and international settings. Few events nationwide serve as a venue to highlight educational programs, initiatives, research, and opportunities created by Latinos and about Latinos to advance Hispanic/Latino health.


The format of the Latino Health Symposium highlights the three main objectives:


The Latino Health Symposium will have an opening plenary to discuss the selected theme, “Moving Forward,” in which our keynote speakers will target an action plan of what needs to be done to move forward in advancing Latino health, wellness, and leadership. The plenary sessions will be followed by educational tracks in four distinct areas, to cater to various interests and career paths among our membership:

  • LGBTQ Latino Health – To highlight critical knowledge and best practices in caring for the LGBTQ community and diversity and inclusion in the healthcare community.
  • Latino-focused Medical Education – To include teaching Latino health topics in Medical Education such as cultural competency, Medical Spanish, service-focused electives, and Diversifying medical school admissions)
  • Women in Medicine: Clinical Practice, Research, and Beyond – To highlight the unique challenges and contributions of women who are leaders, physicians, and investigators.
  • Cutting Edge Research: Featuring Latino Health and Latino Investigators – Open-topic session with the top abstract submissions will be selected to be oral presenters. Topics must meet at least one of the conference objectives to be selected.

Innovation will be highlighted through a robust and competitive academic poster session to highlight innovative work by Latino students and professionals and/or about issues in Hispanic/Latino health under three categories:  research projects, community outreach projects, and academic case reports.


Networking and professional connections will be facilitated to all conference attendees throughout the day through interactive sessions, question and answer and discussion components of the program. In addition, poster presenters and oral presenters will have networking opportunities during the poster exhibit and judging and a special evening reception. Further, mentorship relationships established through MOLA’s pipeline mentorship program will have a special time to connect in mentorship teams.

Exhibitors / Sponsors

Commercial sponsors and MOLA partner organizations will be invited to purchase a booth and provide sponsorship at various levels for the symposium. MOLA is excited to partner with many organizations, both for-profit and non-profit, but is also committed to unbiased educational advancement of our physicians and students.

Exhibit booth cost for the 3rd MOLA Latino Health Symposium is $2,000 per exhibit table, which includes 2 registrations to the October 5th program 7am-5pm.

As a non-profit 501c3 organization, MOLA is pleased to offer tax-deduction benefits to our sponsors to the extent permitted by law.

To discuss sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities, please contact [email protected] or visit http://www.chicagomola.com/sponsorship/

Symposium Location