SMHS Workforce Diversity Snapshot

     Enhancing diversity and inclusion in our biomedical workforce remains an important goal, as African American, Latinx and indigenous people make up about 30% of the US population but represent only about 10% of biomedical professionals. While the national proportion of natural science baccalaureates (NSF), natural science PhDs (NSF) and MDs (AAMC) earned by individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups has risen steadily, disparities continue at each educational level, and their impact is cumulative.

     Diversity benefits both our educational and research work environments (NIH). Students from diverse groups offer new perspectives and raise important questions, and enhance the cognitive development, satisfaction, and leadership abilities of all students. Diversity fosters scientific innovation and discovery and increases the likelihood that outcomes will benefit individuals from health disparity populations. Diversity is important.

     The GW University dashboard and administrative offices provide a snapshot of current representational diversity at SMHS and in Ross Hall, below. We further value engagement by researchers from sexual minority groups (about 10% of the District’s population identifies lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender), individuals with physical disabilities and those from disadvantaged socio-economic groups, although eligibility and available data on these representational groups varies and is presented where known. 

Our Students
  • The MD program (2021 entering class; n=183) is 61% female, 31% Asian, 12% African American and 10% Hispanic. In addition, 11% of students describe themselves as disadvantaged by AMCAS eligibility.
  • The PhD program (2021 IBS; n= 63) is 70% female, 71% White, 13% Asian, 5% African American, 11% Hispanic. In addition, at least one student has a physical disability and 3% describe themselves as financially disadvantaged by NIH eligibility.
  • The Physical Therapy Program (2020 + 2021 ; n=276) is 68% female, 61% White, 10% Asian, 2% African American, 10% Hispanic.
  • The Physician’s Assistant Program (2020+ 2021) is 78% female, 49% White, 19% Asian, 7% African American, 13% Hispanic.
Our Staff
  • The Ross Hall employee group (2021, n= 229) is 66% female, 51% White, 20% Asian,19% African American, 7% Hispanic.
  • The Research Full-Time subset (2021; n =77) is 66% female, 36% White, 36% Asian, 9% African American, 13% Hispanic.
  • The Staff Full-Time subset (2021; n=99) is 78% female, 53% White 7% Asian, 33% African American, 4% Hispanic.
Our Faculty
  • The Regular Faculty (SMHS total regular faculty, 2021, n= 1252) are affiliated with a variety of institutions such as CNH (54%), the GW Medical Faculty Associates (29%), SMHS (10%), the Veterans Administration (6%), and other organizations (1%).
  • Overall, the regular faculty is 57% female, 56% White, 21% Asian, 9% African American; 4% Hispanic.
SMHS programs and plans to enhance diversity in the biomedical workforce

     GW and CNH have numerous pipeline programs to build diversity in research and medicine at the pre-college, college and graduate medical levels that stimulate biomedical careers. Pipeline strategies to enhance diverse representation in our research programs are based on conceptual models for academic persistence that include hands-on research experiences to build science self-efficacy and identity. Our programs use holistic admissions approaches, affinity groups, and intentional role models to support student retention.

     Many efforts are coordinated at the university level by Caroline Laguerre-Brown JD, the GW Vice Provost for Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement, who is joined by Yolanda Haywood, MD Senior Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion at SMHS, and Denice Cora Bramble MD, Chief Diversity Officer at CNH. The Anti-Racism Coalition is a grassroots coalition of medical faculty, staff, scientific educators, and broad array of learners formed to address individual, institutional and structural racism.