Thursday, June 14, 2012

Doc McStuffin Garners Support from African American Women Physicians

Since it's premiere in March, my nieces Shakina and Yonina have enjoyed watching Disney's Doc McStuffins. In fact, so have their brothers. And our family was not the only one watching the show. Since it's debut Doc McStuffins has found it's way into many households and now rates as one of the top most watched children's program. Recently, Disney decided to renew the show for another season, which will make a lot of people happy. One group in particular has been very pleased with this outcome. A group of African American women doctors lead by Dr. Myiesha Taylor has expressed thanks and support for this new program that features a little African American girl in the lead role. Her ambition to be a doctor resonates with these African American physicians. They represent a diverse group of physicians from Neurosurgery, Pediatrics, Pediatric Anesthesiology, Ob/gyn, Cardiothoracic surgery, Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Orthopedic Surgery, Occupational Medicine, Emergency medicine, Internal medicine, Family medicine, and more. They have studied at diverse colleges and universities including Harvard, Yale, Sanford and Spelman. All the doctors have inspiring stories of strength and resilience to tell. Since they have had to be trailblazers in pursuit of their dreams, they are keenly aware of the importance of role models. For African American girls, TV has offered only a few role models that reflect them. Characters featuring African Americans have been portrayed mostly as side kicks or ambiguous characters like Word Girl. For Dr. Myiesha Taylor, who watches Disney Channel's "Doc McStuffins" with her 4-year-old, Hana, the show sends a much-needed message to minority girls about how big their ambitions can be. "It's so nice to see this child of color in a starring role, not just in the supporting cast. It's all about her," Taylor said. "And she's an aspiring intellectual professional, not a singer or dancer or athlete." In order to thank Disney and garner support for Doc McStuffins, Dr. Taylor created the "We Are Doc McStuffins" collage, which is made up of 131 pictures of African American women physicians from around the world surrounding Doc McStuffins. Dr. Taylor explains, "It is about time that we have an image on children’s daytime T.V. that we can proudly share with our children as an example that they truly can achieve anything. She ends her open letter to Disney by expressing the enthusiasm of the group. "We close by once again thanking Disney Jr. and Brown Bag Films for this great new role model for our children. We also want to extend a special thanks to the very talented creator of Doc McStuffins, Chris Nee. Chris your show has touched many women who get up each day to live out that childhood dream of becoming a physician. We appreciate you capturing the hopes and dreams we all held as a little girl and sharing them with the world." See

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