Black History Month Alumni Highlights: Science & Healthcare

In celebration of Black History Month, we wanted to highlight some of Binghamton University’s Black alumni who are doing exceptional work! Binghamton’s alumni are here for you to connect and network with, always eager to offer career advice because, at one point in time, they were in your shoes. Here are some highly accomplished Black alumni who can help you gain insight on your career! 

Jamal Lawrence 

Jamal Lawrence, class of 2011, is a board-certified family medicine/primary care physician, and the founder and CEO of Harvest Health MD in Savannah, GA. He graduated from Binghamton with a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences and a minor in sociology. Lawrence attended Indiana University School of Medicine and later completed his training at the Savannah Family Medicine Residency program at Memorial Health in Savannah. After residency, Lawrence traveled throughout Georgia, providing care to patients as a solo practitioner in a rural setting and wound care physician. However, Savannah remained close to his heart. Thus, he established his own practice in Savannah as a direct primary care physician with a special focus on lifestyle medicine and plant-based nutrition.

Throughout his education and training, Lawrence has held leadership positions in various organizations, and was recognized on local and national levels for his leadership and service to his community. After learning about direct primary care, it became obvious to Lawrence that it was the method most congruent with his desire to impact patients on a deeper level while providing affordable and accessible health care. Thus, the impetus for Harvest Health MD was developed. Winning S.C.O.R.E. Savannah’s 2020 Bizpitch Competition further validated the concept of Harvest Health MD and its potential impact on his community. 

A piece of advice you would give to current Binghamton students:

A prerequisite to whatever you are trying to achieve is to write it down! Write the vision and make it plain. It may not come in the expected time frame but it will happen. 



Tiffany D. Folks

Tiffany D. Folks, MSN, APRN, CPNP had the privilege of entering Binghamton University through the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP). She believes this program served as the foundation for her overall success and completion of a Bachelor of Science in nursing (2004), as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and African American Studies (2003).

Tiffany has a diverse background in advanced practice nursing, bedside pediatric critical care, nursing education, and leadership. As Tiffany advanced from novice to expert pediatric nurse, she trained numerous new hires along the way. Tiffany gained a love for nursing education and transitioned to a full-time clinical nursing educator position. In this role, she had the immense responsibility of formalizing a nursing orientation program for a general inpatient pediatric unit, neonatal intensive care unit, and pediatric intensive care unit.

When Tiffany transitioned to the assistant nurse manager role, she was afforded the unique opportunity to serve as co-lead for many quality improvement projects, such as increasing early mobilization rates in a pediatric intensive care unit. Tiffany joined Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School Teaching Hospital in 2019 with the distinct honor of participating in the highly competitive Cardiovascular and Critical Care Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program. After successful completion of the rigorous training program, she was granted a full-time position in the Cardiology Department. 

Throughout her professional journey, Tiffany has committed to improving the care of underrepresented communities. She participated in “Hospitals for Humanity,” a collaborative team of international physicians, nurses, and pharmacists, working to provide open heart surgeries in rural Nigeria. Additionally, she has participated in numerous local community blood pressure screenings and health care summits. Tiffany has presented poster presentations in local and national conferences and co-authored published articles. In the coming years, Tiffany aspires to enroll in a PhD program in nursing and proudly affirms about her career: “I’m just beginning…for a faithful ambassador brings healing.”

A piece of advice you would give to current Binghamton students:

Do not take your time at BU for granted! You will meet some of the most dynamic people from all walks of life. And many of these people will be in your life forever. My roommate is my son’s godmother. Some of my favorite EOP counselors still support me to this day. I speak to my sorority sisters often and we are there for baby showers, birthdays and even the tough times.


By Kyla Anderson
Kyla Anderson Senior Peer Consultant