These Roma Students Make Better Physicians than Musicians

“I was not born with music flowing through my veins,” says Madalina in the video above, explaining that the prevalent Roma-as-musician stereotype does not apply to her and her fellow medical students in Bucharest, Romania. In fact, as the video shows, they make lousy buskers.

Breaking through these cultural perceptions and promoting inclusion are goals of a unique scholarship program supported and coordinated by the Open Society Foundations in partnership with the Roma Education Fund, and other implementers. The program has funded more than 1,000 Roma medical students like Madalina over the last seven years in Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Macedonia. 

Alumni have gone on to positions at the World Bank, the finest hospitals in Europe, and clinics within their own communities. Roma can now begin to see themselves reflected in Europe’s medical elite, and medical workers can better identify with Roma as both patients and peers. 

In Romania, our partners at an organization called ActiveWatch created a media campaign to challenge popular misconceptions about Roma. Watch the video above to see one piece of a creative campaign by Roma to recast images of their community.

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I feel very proud of Roma throughout Europe, you also know we do things human

Congratulations and just before the European Roma

I feel very encouraged and enthused to note that the Roma issue is really appreciated and the people seen as very important segment/ group in the human kingdom. To assert their rights as such in all levels of human endeavor- shows their worthiness and inclusive in the comity of human races and nations. More crease to Roma elbows and a big Congrats.

for Roma fighting for health care for people

More of the good things Roma do should be shown in public. In Germany we mostly hear about beggars and prostitutes. Not about Roma Doctors.

Thank you for this creative way to bring such animportant message... thanks for the work you do

Very, very, very proud of these young roma medical doctors, Opre Rroma!

I visited Bulgaria for a medical fellowship in obstetrics and gynecology and worked with a lot of Roma parturients and teenage pregnancies. Remember being very affected by what they were going through as human beings trying to access healthcare for themselves and newborn children. To hear this news is truly phenomenal as the importance of being able to culturally identify with your healthcare taker has been written on extensively.

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