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UI COM Student Aisha Suhaiba Selected for NFL Diversity in Sports Medicine Initiative

Aisha Suhaiba

The National Football League (NFL) recently announced clinical rotation participants in its Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative for 2024. Aisha Suhaiba, a fourth-year University of Illinois College of Medicine medical student with a specialty interest in orthopedics, will spend August 2024 working with the Chicago Bears’ team of physicians and medical professionals.

Launched in 2022, the NFL Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative is a joint program of the NFL, NFL Physicians Society (NFLPS) and Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS). The Initiative was developed to encourage medical students from diverse backgrounds to consider sports medicine careers.

During her rotation, Aisha will observe and participate in the care of Chicago Bears players directly under the supervision of orthopedic team physicians, primary care team physicians, and athletic trainers to gain basic medical knowledge and exposure to patient care in sports medicine. Additionally, she will also become familiar with return-to-play guidelines and on-field treatment considerations for NFL athletes.

“As a student who aspires to become an orthopedic surgeon, I do not think that there is a better way to understand what goes into the holistic care of the athlete than doing so at the highest level, and I am grateful to be able to do so through this program,” Suhaiba said. “I respect the NFL tremendously for creating this initiative, and I am proud to be a participant who will one day be able to show those who come after me what is possible, especially for Black women as we currently comprise only 0.6% of all orthopedic surgeons.”

For more information on the NFL Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline Initiative, visit the NFL website.