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#OverIt Moment: While incarcerated in a Japanese internment camp, Dr. Shigewaka provided care to over 17,000 inmates.

Sakaye Shigekawa

Dr. Sakaye Shigewaka was born on January 6, 1913 in South Pasadena, California. Dr. Shigewaka was studying medicine at USC where she wanted to complete her degree, but in 1935, the university did not admit women into their medical program. So she earned her medical degree at Stritch Loyola Medical School, specializing in obstetrics, where she was only one of four women in her class. During World War II, Dr. Shigewaka and her family were incarcerated at a Japanese internment camp in Santa Anita, California. At the camp, she was one of seven physicians providing care to over 17,000 inmates. She was both the youngest and the only female physician there. After the war ended, Dr. Shigewaka went on to both open her own practice and work in renowned hospitals across California.

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