Keylynne Matos-Cunningham: Speaking Up for Health Justice

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Keylynne Matos-Cunningham is a force to be reckoned with.

The eldest of three younger siblings and a blend of Northern, Southern, African-American and Puerto Rican cultures, Matos-Cunningham stands up and speaks out against injustices experienced by underrepresented minorities.

Matos-Cunningham graduated with her master’s degree of public health from Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University (ECU). Her research interests are mental health, minority health, sexual health and social determinants of health. She works full-time in substance abuse prevention and is an adjunct health instructor at ECU.

There are many things that move her and drive her closer to her purpose. She believes that being a servant of the community is how to best understand the world.

To further her experience and education, Matos-Cunningham applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program.

The Éxito! program, led by Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez at UT Health San Antonio with support from the National Cancer Institute, recruits 25 master’s-level students and professionals each year for a five-day summer institute and optional internships to promote doctoral degrees and careers in Latino cancer. A recent study found significant increases in summer institute participants’ confidence to apply to a doctoral program and academic self-efficacy.

Matos-Cunningham, credits The Éxito! summer institute for her “increased confidence.”

Editor’s Note: This is the story of a graduate of the 2018 Èxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program at UT Health San Antonio, the headquarters of the Salud America! program. Apply now for Èxito! 2019.

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By The Numbers By The Numbers

28

percent

of Latino kids suffer four or more adverse childhood experiences (ACES).

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