Division of Biology and Medicine
Office of Belonging, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

Brown Advocates for Social Change and Equity (BASCE)

Brown Advocates for Social Change and Equity (BASCE) seeks to develop healthcare leaders who have a passion for engaging their peers in dialogue around issues of racism, cultural diversity, inclusion, social justice, and health equity.  

Program Mission

-Create and build a community
-Support research and project development
-Increase self-efficacy in the life-long pursuit of social justice

Program Elements

A Focus on Your Journey

The BASCE fellowship is all about YOU. 

Although each experience will be different for participants, all will: 
•Have an opportunity to be a part of a community and learn from others with different levels of experience in medicine. 
•Learn concepts and practices that are transferrable to your career goals. 
•Participate in individualized coaching for your unique projects. 

A Focus on Care and Well-Being 

At BASCE, we care not just about content, but also about process. 

Activating our minds goes with nourishing our bodies. As such, we will be providing a light dinner for all in-person meetings. We will also be employing somatic practices to ensure that participants are centered during difficult conversations. 

A Social Media Presence

The BASCE culminating activity will be an in-person presentation followed by a dinner reception. These presentations will be placed in a YouTube channel and participants can utilize this for career advancement, grant proposals, and their own social media platforms. 

BASCE will also support its participants in creating a short (~1 min) video that can be uploaded to Instagram, X, or TikTok.

Effective and rigorous social justice work relies on continuous learning in each of the following domains:

  • The "Head" - Increasing your knowledge.
  • The "Heart" - Reflecting on your positionality and how this impacts your work moving forward.

  • The "Hand" - Planning for, implementing, and evaluating change. 

While most people are excited to jump right into the "hand", we encourage our participants to reflect on their journey first. After all, effective and sustainable projects are often implemented by those who have had significant opportunities to think deeply about change. 

Regardless of where you are on your journey, the BASCE fellowship will be there to support you. You can work on your selected project individually, or in groups of 3. Please read more about each project below.

Brown Advocates for Social Change and Equity fellows hail from all of our affiliated hospital systems and represent numerous specialties and demographic groups. They are faculty and medical students, residents and fellows, but they all share a common goal: to become leaders equipped to make real change in health care.

Mukesh K. Jain, MD Senior Vice President for Health Affairs, and Dean of Medicine and Biological Sciences

The program builds a community of medical students, residents, and faculty who have been trained to facilitate cross-cultural activities and dialogues on race, unconscious bias, and health equity within our peer community and respective healthcare systems. The sessions focus on critical thinking and dialogue, mentoring, and active workshopping of a project.


Neishay Ayub-BASCE

Neishay Ayub

Neishay Ayub is a Neurology/ Epilepsy Attending and Assistant Professor at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She was born in Pakistan and grew up in the suburbs of Massachusetts. She attended Wellesley College, where she studied Neuroscience. She completed her MD and internal medicine preliminary year at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She completed her Neurology residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and her Epilepsy fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital. Throughout her career, she has been interested in global and domestic health disparities, quality improvement and global neurology. She serves as the Diversity Equity and Inclusion Officer at Brown Neurology, and is grateful to join the BASCE community in order to better incorporate advocacy, diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice into her practice as well as the larger Neurology community as a whole.

Ana Sofia Debrito-BASCE

Ana Sofia Debrito

Ana Sofia goes by she/her/hers pronouns. She was born in Cape Verde Islands and immigrated to the United States as a 5 year old where she lived in Pawtucket, RI —a very heavily Cape Verdean community. She attended Dartmouth College and then went on to earn her midwifery degree from Yale School of Nursing. She currently practices midwifery at Women and Infants hospital and is a clinical educator for Brown University, teaching medical students and residency doctors. She is interested in equitable healthcare and reproductive health justice, particularly for Black and Brown identifying and gender diverse folks. She has a two year old child who makes her laugh every day and makes her remember the wonderful-ness about humanity.

Image result for giovanna delluca brown

Giovanna Deluca

Giovanna is a PGY3 Emergency medicine resident at Brown University. She has focused most of her work outside the hospital on social medicine and global health. She holds a master’s degree in nutrition from Columbia University. At Columbia, she focused her research on determinants of childhood stunting in East Timor and other post-war zone countries and worked to provide multi-disciplinary care for high-risk CHF patients at Harlem Hospital.

She earned her medical degree at SUNY Upstate Medical University in 2019. At Upstate she was the president of the student chapter of Physicians for Human Rights and helped teach medical literacy and nutritional education at the Women’s Rescue Mission in Syracuse. She also worked closely with the large refugee population within Onondaga County and with the Refugee and Immigrant Self-Empowerment program. At Brown University, she focuses her work on increasing the diversity within the residency program and works with Discussing Antiracism and Equity in Emergency Medicine, a program developed as an educational intervention for frontline providers. She has also been involved with the global health department at Brown University, working on research and teaching projects in Kenya, Rwanda, and Nepal.

Kayla Dewar-BASCE

Kyla Dewar, MD

Kyla Dewar, MD, FACP, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine, Clinician Educator at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Division of General Internal Medicine. She is also a primary care physician at Brown Medicine. Kyla is Canadian and did her undergrad in Physiology at McGill University and earned her medical degree at Saba University School of Medicine. She did her Internal Medicine residency and Chief Resident year at St Mary’s Health Center in St Louis. She moved to Rhode Island at the start of the pandemic  with her husband, two year old twins and dog. While exploring antiracism work within the division she found a need for pipeline programs to help increase diversity in medicine.  She is now the physician advisor for AMS  Pathways to Medicine Pipeline program and is working on developing a shadowing program for these high school students. Kyla is honored to be accepted as a BASCE fellow and strives to continue to educate herself about structural racism in medicine, to act as an ally, and to advocate for changes needed to improve the health and wellbeing of everyone.


Carroll Arrindell Medeiros

Carroll Arrindell Medeiros was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in New York City in a multilingual home. A National Hispanic Scholar, she was part of the first class of the Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME) at Brown University, graduating from the College in 1989 and the medical school in 1993.  She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at teaching hospitals of Harvard Medical School. After completion of her residency, she returned to Brown and Women and Infants Hospital. She currently works at Southern New England Healthcare for Women in Pawtucket.  Dr. Medeiros has been a clinical assistant professor at Alpert Medical School since the early 2000s and has served as preceptor in the Ob/Gyn clerkship, Doctoring, longitudinal electives, and the LIC program. Dr. Medeiros has been fortunate to be able to care for women-especially in Hispanic communities- throughout the whole span of their lives and she feels privileged to care for large extended families. Apart from medical care, she has been actively involved in mentoring and counseling her patients about college admission and health careers. As a BASCE Fellow, Dr. Medeiros would like to learn how to facilitate discussions around race and diversity in medical care specifically in the field of ob/gyn where differences in access to and equity of care among women of color and their children have translated into severe disparities in pregnancy outcomes. Dr. Medeiros has three great kids and she enjoys jazz, tennis, and all things Harry Potter.


Olutosin Ojugbele-BASCE

Olutosin "Tosin" Ojugbele

'Tosin' is an assistant professor of pediatrics at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. She is a native New Yorker. After attending the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education in New York City, she completed her MD and an MPH in community health science at SUNY Downstate as well as a T32 post-doctoral fellowship in primary care research at Dartmouth before coming to Brown. She has co-authored articles on mental health in marginalized populations and the inclusion of racial justice curricula in medical education. She is interested in social medicine and is focused on quality improvement in primary care pediatrics as it pertains to health equity and social justice. She enjoys reading, traveling, eating global cuisines, and spending time with her young family.


Gerry Ovide-BASCE

Gerry Ovide

Gerry Ovide is a chief medical resident of internal medicine at Brown University. He completed his undergraduate degree at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA and medical school in Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA. A second-generation immigrant from Haiti, he grew up in Philadelphia where exposures to the healthcare field guided him towards a career in medicine. His career interests include medical education and advocacy for diversity, equity, and inclusion. He is currently pursuing a cardiovascular disease fellowship where he hopes to continue these endeavors.

Sudheesha Perera-BASCE

Sudheesha Perera

Sudheesha Perera is a third-year medical student at Alpert Medical School. Originally from New Jersey, he completed his undergraduate degree at Brown majoring in applied mathematics and computer science. His interests broadly include access to care, policy reform, and health data science. Wherever the future takes him, he hopes to use his position to advocate on behalf of marginalized patients and communities. In his free time he enjoys being outside and watching international cricket.


Lindsey Pileika-BASCE

Linsey Pileika

Lindsey Pileika is a medical student at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She came to medicine after working in population health analytics in Miami, FL and Chiapas, Mexico with Partners in Health. She is passionate about reproductive health, harm reduction, and social medicine. As a white-identifying fellow participating in BASCE, she is committed to listening and serving in solidarity with BIPOC physicians, medical trainees, and community members.

Phillip Sojka-BASCE

Phillip Sojka

Originally from West Lafayette, Indiana, I completed my undergraduate and medical degrees at Indiana University. Between those degrees, I spent a year with the Americorps project City Year in Boston, working with underserved youth as a mentor and tutor to help kids get back on track to graduate. The City Year experience has a strong focus on social justice and equity, which helped ignite a passion for both within me. I am now a 4th year resident in the triple board (Pediatrics/Psychiatry/Child and Adolescent Psychiatry) program. My hope is to continue in academic medicine after residency, with a focus on medical curriculum and equity in medicine.  Beyond work, I am an avid runner, exploring the outdoors and reading realistic fiction. Most importantly, I closely follow NCAA college basketball, forever hoping my alma mater will win its 6th national championship. Go Hoosiers!

Margie Thorsen-BASCE

Margie Thorsen

Margie Thorsen is a third year ob/gyn resident at Women and Infants Hospital. A lifelong Rhode Islander, Margie went to Brown for undergrad and medical school and is grateful to care for patients in the community where she grew up. She hopes to pursue a career in maternal fetal medicine, partnering with pregnant patients and advocating for structural changes to promote health equity in RI. In her free time, she enjoys mentoring, playing with her puppy Winnie, and kayaking with her husband, Yao.