Touching Base – Jan Maudlin Sarcoma Scholar

2019-20 RIS Maudlin Sarcoma Scholar Regina Martinez

“Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing”  Theodore Roosevelt

Regina Martinez Lorenzo is a third year medical student at the University of Minnesota and a current Jan Maudlin Sarcoma Scholar. She has a Master’s degree in epidemiology and is interested in global/public health issues, as well as surgical oncology.

Regina first heard about the Rein in Sarcoma scholarship program during a UMN lunch presentation given by two previous scholars. She felt that the mission of the program, spreading awareness and education of sarcoma cancers, lends itself well to her chosen medical disciplines.

Regina, who was born in Mexico, chose to use her bilingual skills as an aspect of her specific scholar project. She translated Rein in Sarcoma educational materials and brochures into Spanish. Among these were the Red Flags of Sarcoma brochure and pocket card, as well as the Rein in Sarcoma Organization brochure. She is working closely with Valeria Lopez, RIS Board Member, to spread the word about sarcoma diseases and symptoms within the Latinx community.

With the onset of Covid-19, plans to distribute the bilingual pamphlets in person had to be curtailed. Regina is now looking to share the Spanish sarcoma materials in the Twin Cities online through social media. She will target community clinics with large Latinx populations. From there, she looks forward to the time that the information can be spread to other parts of the nation.

Regina has been able to further assist and educate diverse segments of society during this time of Covid-19 by becoming a contact tracer/case investigator for the MN Department of Health. She has been a valuable resource for the Spanish speaking population and has been tracing Covid-19 case contacts, especially for meat processing plant workers.

Regina feels that one of the most rewarding aspects of her RIS Jan Maudlin Sarcoma Scholar position has been obtaining sarcoma cancer knowledge through educational lectures she has attended. She knows that this has contributed to her being more vigilant about her patients’ diagnoses. By keeping sarcoma cancer symptoms front and center in her mind, Regina feels that she can be a more effective physician. Meeting with sarcoma cancer survivors and hearing their personal stories has also been very impactful for her. She also wished to express how privileged she feels to be working with the passionate board members, patients, survivors, families, and volunteers of Rein in Sarcoma.