I left that National Society of Genetic Counselors national meeting last Fall with one central thought about the future of Genetic Counseling: We must diversify.
For many years the majority of genetic counselors have been young, white females who identify as straight – or at leastthat is the broad perception. We all realize now that as our field expands and grows, our perception of who a genetic counselor is must expand too. We need to welcome and invite more men, ethnic and religious minorities, and LGBTQIA+ people to our field. We also need more people who identify as disabled or differently-abled, those who are from less privileged socioeconomic backgrounds, counselors joining our field later in life, and/or after working in other careers/ earning degrees in fields other than biology and psychology (think business, technology, law, pharmacology, bioinformatics, artificial intelligence, engineering). This diversity will strengthen our field, make us better care providers, and allow us to move forward stronger and smarter, together.
My Gene Counsel is therefore highlighting and celebrating genetic counselors outside the typical mold, in hopes of welcoming more diversity into our field. We welcome your thoughts, ideas, and referrals!