**FILE** Howard University, a historically Black institution, is located in northwest D.C. (Courtesy of Howard University)
**FILE** Howard University, a historically Black institution, is located in northwest D.C. (Courtesy of Howard University)

Two Howard University College of Medicine students will participate in the NFL’s Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline initiative that will be sponsored by the Washington Commanders this fall.

The program was co-created by the NFL and the NFL Physicians Society to increase the number of students of color in careers in sports medicine with the long-term goal of diversifying team medical staff.

Howard students Jessica Smith and Justin Moore will be a part of the inaugural class of the initiative and participate in a clinical rotation.

“We are thrilled to be participating in this tremendous program,” said Dr. Anthony Casolaro, the Commanders’ chief medical officer of internal medicine. “This program is giving young students at HBCUs the opportunity to get their foot in the door and start a career in the NFL. We are getting two qualified students who will not only come in here to learn but will also make our department better.”

Commanders officials contacted the dean of Howard’s medical school about the start of the program. The grandfather of Amina Bulman, the Commanders’ senior vice president of corporate strategy and affairs, is a graduate of Howard’s medical school.

Smith is a fourth-year medical student pursuing a career in orthopedic surgery. A graduate of Stanford University in 2018, she served as a student athletic training intern at the school working mainly with the football and men’s volleyball teams.

Moore participated in the Howard University Summer Health Professions Education Program which influenced his decision to become a physician. A 2019 graduate of North Carolina State University, he participates in the physical medicine and rehabilitation interest group.

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