Minority Faculty Development Programs and Underrepresented Minority Faculty Representation at U.S. Medical Schools

Summer Medical and Dental Education Program students pose for a photo.

Over the period 2000–2010, minority representation in medical schools modestly increased.

The Issue:
The Institute of Medicine has advocated that medical schools bolster their support of underrepresented minority faculty to increase recruitment, retention, and promotion of minority physicians and scientists. How much do minority faculty development programs contribute to enhancing diversity?

Key Findings

  • Over the 10 years analyzed, underrepresented faculty increased from 6.8 percent in 2000 to 8 percent in 2010.

  • Hispanic faculty members increased (from 3.6% to 4.3%), as did Blacks (from 3.2% to 3.4%).

  • Compared to other faculty, minority faculty were more likely to be at newer, private, historically Black, and smaller institutions in the South. They were less likely to hold senior ranks or be on tenure tracks.

  • At schools with minority faculty development programs, underrepresented faculty increased modestly (6.5% to 7.4%), similar to schools without programs (7.0% to 8.3%).

  • Programs in place more than five years and with more components were associated with a greater increase in minority faculty representation.


The authors write: "Minority faculty development programs that were of greater intensity were associated with greater increases in underrepresented minority faculty representation.”

About the Study:
Investigators analyzed MD degree-granting medical schools using data from the Association of American Medical Colleges covering the years 2000 through 2010.