IMPACT Melanoma Recognizes DIGA Program Volunteer Dana Jaalouk

Jan 26, 2024

Our team is proud of our partnership with the Dermatology Interest Group Association (DIGA), which is represented by medical students pursuing careers in dermatology across the country.

This month, we’re featuring Dana Jaalouk, who is completing her research fellowship at the University of Miami’s Dr. Phillip Frost Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery under the guidance of Dr. Keyvan Nouri. Dana will be returning to do her fourth year of medical school next year at Florida State University.

A graduate of the University of Florida, Dana majored in biology and continues to follow in the footsteps of her parents, both of whom are physicians who immigrated to the US from Syria and worked exceptionally hard to establish their medical careers in Florida.

In Dana’s words, “Their hard work paved the way for my career and instilled in me a profound respect for the resilience and dedication required in the medical field. I am driven by the same commitment to excellence and compassion in healthcare.”

Read on to learn how Dana got involved with IMPACT Melanoma and the impact this involvement has had on her journey.

Why IMPACT Melanoma?

IMPACT’s strong commitment to skin cancer prevention and education aligns with my personal and professional interests in dermatology. I admire IMPACT Melanoma’s proactive approach in addressing a crucial public health issue and their impactful initiatives that educate and empower individuals.

What made you get involved with this organization?

I was inspired by IMPACT Melanoma’s mission to reduce the incidence of skin cancer through public awareness and advocacy.

As a medical student and dermatology research fellow, I wanted to contribute my knowledge and passion to an organization dedicated to making a tangible difference in skin cancer prevention.

Do you have a personal connection or experience with skin cancer or melanoma that inspired your action?

While I don’t have personal experience, my professional journey in dermatology has heightened my awareness of the severity and prevalence of skin cancer. Encountering patients and hearing their stories reinforced my dedication to preventive care and education in this field.

What have you learned from this experience?

Creating the new “No Sun for Babies” brochure was a very rewarding experience and I worked hard to make sure it was both enjoyable and informative. I hope it helps bring awareness to parents and caregivers about the importance of sun safety for infants and how to protect their babies from the sun. I also gained a deeper understanding of how encouraging sun safety habits from an early age can play a key role in skin cancer prevention, while enhancing my skills in communicating medical information in an understandable and relatable way.

What do you want others to learn or know about IMPACT Melanoma or skin cancer/melanoma in general?

To understand that skin cancer, including melanoma, is highly preventable and regular skin checks and protective measures can save lives.

To bring awareness that organizations like IMPACT Melanoma provide invaluable resources and support for both prevention and coping with skin cancer.

To recognize the importance of early detection and that everyone, regardless of skin type or background, is at risk and should be educated about skin cancer prevention.

To emphasize that initiatives like the No Sun for Babies project are crucial for laying the foundation of a healthier future by educating parents and guardians about the risks of sun exposure for infants.

Are you inspired to Make a Difference? Learn about all such opportunities here.

If you are a Dermatology student and want to learn more about DIGA and getting involved, please contact us.

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