Radiology’s Diversity Committee welcomes HOPE pathway coordinators

Posted on February 2024

The UW Department of Radiology’s Diversity Committee held its kick-off meeting on November 15, 2023, for faculty and staff interested in improving the field’s workforce diversity, addressing patient health outcomes, and engaging in other diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts. Special guests, Byron Bishop II and Kelly Bangs, joined the meeting to share information about the Health Occupations and Professions Exploration (HOPE) Program and their role as pathway coordinators.

With the mission statement of “Find them, engage them, grow them, and hire them,” the HOPE Program has two primary goals. First, the program helps UW Health build and maintain a long-term, high-quality, and diverse workforce pipeline. Second, the program supports underrepresented youth by developing accessible pathways into healthcare careers, including experiential learning, mentorship, and meaningful employment opportunities.

The department has a long history with HOPE Program dating back to 2014 when former Department Chair Thomas Grist, MD, Fred Lee, MD and the Radiology Finance Committee made the first commitment to financially support HOPE, before it was formally adopted as a UW Health program in 2016. The Diversity Committee was happy to welcome the HOPE pathway coordinators who shared the program’s structure and how it could satisfy the departmental need for both diversity and the alleviation of the workforce shortage.

Bishop delivered a powerful speech about HOPE’s mission, structure, and impact on the Madison community in addition to sharing his background as a former K-12 Special Education educator with a focus on supporting those who were deemed “other” by society. Former middle school educator of 10 years, Bangs explained how she connects students to different careers and fosters their professional growth. Both guests addressed questions and concerns raised by the participants.

The meeting marked the official launch of the department’s Diversity Committee, after a previous committee was disbanded due to the impacts of the pandemic. The reinvigoration is led by Vice Chair of Equity Anand Narayan, MD, PhD and Associate Professor Maria Daniela Martin Rother, MD with the support of Research Coordinator Nicole Boone.

The relaunch was sparked by a survey, in which faculty and staff stated their desired DEI priorities for the department. Those include recruiting, cultivating, and retaining faculty, trainees and students who are highly qualified, engaged, and diverse. The next committee meeting will explore departmental goals and areas of interest set forth by members. Those interested in joining the committee can contact Boone at