Enhancing Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Recruitment Through a Medical Student Mentorship Network: A Qualitative Study

Anita Kishore, Madeline DiGiovanni, Kevin Lee Sun, Alexander Kolevzon, Laelia Benoit, Andrés Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: There is a shortage of psychiatrists necessary to meet the clinical needs of children and adolescents. Efforts over the past decade to enhance the workforce have had a limited impact. This study sought to identify the critical components of a medical student mentorship network designed to increase recruitment into the subspecialty. Methods: The authors conducted interviews via synchronized videoconferencing of network site leaders and medical students at 14 schools throughout the USA. In addition, they analyzed verbatim transcripts using a thematic-phenomenological qualitative approach. Results: The authors interviewed thirty-eight program participants during seven focus group sessions: nine program directors and 29 medical students or graduates, a median of five participants per session. They constructed a framework consisting of two overarching domains, comprised of three themes each: (1) life cycle of a subspecialty mentorship network (Origins, Initiation, and Continuity); and (2) next steps to improve the program (Refining goals, Increasing accessibility, and Defining a path forward). Conclusion: Preliminary data have already documented the positive impact of participation in this mentorship program on medical student match rates into psychiatry. The qualitative model of this study provides a blueprint to develop, maintain, and optimize this and similar efforts aimed at increasing the child and adolescent psychiatry workforce.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-133
Number of pages10
JournalAcademic Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2023


  • Child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Mentorship
  • Qualitative
  • Recruitment


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