Howard University is playing a huge role in diversifying the medical field. According to a report released by the Association of American Medical Colleges, the HBCU is the top university for sending African-American applicants to U.S. medical schools, the institution reported.
During the 2017-2018 academic year, 118 students pursuing their undergraduate degrees became U.S. medical school applicants which is more than other academic institutions throughout the country. There are currently over 300 Black students who are enrolled at the university’s College of Medicine. Howard has made the effort to level the playing field for African-American students who want to pursue careers in the medical field. Through initiatives like their Pre-Freshman Summer Enhancement Program, students have the opportunity to participate in intensive courses centered on biology and chemistry and learn about different career paths in medicine.
“Howard University prepares more African-American pre-med students to apply to medical school and enrolls the most African-American students in our own esteemed medical school because we are committed to our mission to diversify the workforce with an infusion of talented, well-prepared scholars,” President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick said in a statement. “Despite these strides there is still a significant underrepresentation of Black and Hispanic medical students enrolling in school. The number of Black male applicants is down from 1976, but we are encouraged and honored to contribute as the institution of choice for many students pursuing careers in medicine.”
The university has been dedicated to diversifying STEM and is putting the emphasis on exposing people of color to the field early on. In June, the institution announced its partnership with the Verizon Innovative Learning Program to provide workshops that cover science, technology, engineering and math for young boys of color in the Washington, D.C. area.