Dr. Ben Carson, who has influenced countless students to strive for a better education, has now inspired his hometown of Detroit to name a new high school in his honor. Detroit Public Schools plans to open the Dr. Benjamin Carson High School of Science and Medicine in the fall for students interested in pursuing healthcare careers.
“When I grew up in Detroit, there wasn’t a high school like this for those interested in healthcare careers,” said Ben Carson, M.D., director of pediatric neurosurgery at Hopkins Children’s. “I am so honored to have a school in my name focused on science and medicine that is designed to bring the best out in students who want to succeed.”
The school will prepare students for healthcare careers through a rigorous high school curriculum, with a college preparatory focus. Students will take college courses and participate in college-level internships. The school will partner with nearby institutions, including Detroit Receiving Hospital and Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Students will learn through project-based learning, seminar/mentoring relationships with teachers, and small group study.
The school will receive funding from Michigan Future, Inc., through its Michigan Future Schools program. This is part of a $2.8 million initiative to open four innovative new high schools that will challenge and support Detroit students as they prepare for college and careers. The school will open to incoming freshmen in fall 2011 and add a grade per year.
About Dr. Carson:
Born in 1951, Benjamin S. Carson, Sr., M.D., had a childhood dream of becoming a physician. Growing up in a single-parent home and being challenged by dire poverty, poor grades, a horrible temper, and low self-esteem took a toll on young Ben and his grades. His dream seemed unattainable, until his mother, with only a third-grade education, challenged her sons to strive for excellence. Both boys persevered, and Ben eventually became Dr. Carson. In 1985, he was named director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, a position he still holds today.
Dr. Carson is also president and co-founder of the Carson Scholars Fund, which recognizes young people of all backgrounds for exceptional academic and humanitarian accomplishments. He holds more than 50 honorary doctorate degrees. He is a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society, the Horatio Alger Society of Distinguished Americans, and many other prestigious organizations.
He is the recipient of the 2006 Spingarn Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the NAACP.
In 2008, Dr. Carson was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Bush at the White House, which is the highest civilian honor in the land. The same year, President Bush also awarded him with the Ford’s Theatre Lincoln Medal by President Bush.
His four books, Gifted Hands, THINK BIG, The Big Picture and Take the Risk: Learning to Identify, Choose and Live with Acceptable Risk, provide inspiration and insight for leading a successful life. In 2009, the movie “Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story” premiered on TNT. The movie was based on Dr. Carson’s memoir and cast Cuba Gooding, Jr. in the leading role. Dr. Carson’s fifth book is due to be released early in 2012.
Dr. Carson has been married for more than 30 years to his wife, Candy, and they have three sons. His mother, Sonya Carson, lives with Dr. and Mrs. Carson in their Maryland home.