Jackson Knappen, BS, BA
Student, KU School of Medicine
Jackson Knappen is a third-year student at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. After gaining confidence in his sexuality as a cisgender gay man, he now strives to integrate LGBTQ health into his future practice. Jackson’s proudest contribution to the Kansas City community was being part of the team that started the JayDoc Free Clinic Transgender Specialty night. Jackson plans to continue advancing transgender medicine by pursuing urology so that he may practice gender affirming surgery for transgender individuals.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Overland Park, Kansas, and graduated from Blue Valley West in 2013. Afterward, I attended the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, where I studied biology and Spanish on a pre-med track. After graduating in 2017, I had the opportunity to live in Madrid, Spain, on a Fulbright Scholarship for one year, where I taught English and Model UN for high school students. Finally, I returned to Kansas City to start medical school in 2018.
What are some of your hobbies?
I love being outdoors, whether it's running, hiking, camping or rock climbing. I'm an amateur in many hobbies like woodworking, building and painting. In the summer, I love skiing and boating.
What made you choose to join the KU Medical Center community?
The school offered a great medical education with wonderful opportunities for hands-on experience in the clinical environment. I also saw the opportunity to work in the community during my time in school, mainly becoming involved with JayDoc Free Clinic. Additionally, I love the groundbreaking procedures in transgender health the KUMC is working to advance.
How does the Pride Celebration Month theme (T.R.U.T.H. - Transcendent, Resilient, Uplifting, Transforming, History Makers) resonate with you?
LGBTQ folks are uplifting in our acceptance and support of uniqueness and individuality, accepting everyone for who they are. We are resilient because we face continued adversity in the legislative and societal sectors and continue to advocate and fight for equality.