Steven Chapman, M.D.
In the Summer of 1990, Cindy Weinstein and I worked with the Turner Middle School in West Philadelphia, teaching the kids to run blood pressure screenings in their communities. The idea for Bridging the gaps came from this experience.
After graduating UPenn Medical School, I did my pediatric residency at Seattle Children's Medical Center, then 4 years in the National Health Service Corp in Lawrence, MA. Next came 8 years in a rural University of Washington teaching practice in Port Angeles, Washington providing pediatric support to schools and tribal clinics on the Olympic Peninsula.
I have always been drawn to advocacy for children, and BTG and the West Philadelphia kids at the Turner Middle School were foundational to my career orientation. Those kids were my real curriculum. They taught me that if I learned to listen to them and dedicated myself to working with communities, real change was possible.
In 2008, I came to Dartmouth to teach advocacy and run the Boyle Community Pediatrics Program. I work with medical students and residents, and lead the Northern New England Advocacy Collaborative. Clinically, I work with parents in early opiate recovery who have young children. I still search for new ways to listen, and new ways to work with communities as a supportive collaborator. I am deeply into co-design as a methodology, both with families and community agencies.
I am interested in learning from the BTG alumni how we can support advocacy as a career path. I, as did many of us, made it up as I went along. So, collectively what did we experience, and what did we discover? I would love to think about how we define advocacy, its rigor and impact, and how we describe and support early career paths.