November 09, 2017

By Jennifer Bihm

Staff Writer

 

Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science here in South Los Angeles, was recently listed as the number two most diverse non-profit college in the United States. The finding was released among a list compiled by the Almanac of Higher Education, published annually by the Chronicles of Higher Education. The high-ranking ushers the University into a class of institutions that includes the University of San Francisco, Hawaii Pacific University and others. These rankings were determined by analyzing fall 2015 enrollment data from the U.S. Department of Education, said CDU officials.

“CDU has grown and evolved, shaped by the needs of the community it serves,” they said.

“The University benefits from its location within the Watts-Willowbrook community and the corresponding diversity and complexities of its population by creating an academic environment unlike any other.”

The U.S. Office of Civil Rights designated the private college as a minority serving institution in 1966, while the U.S. Department of Education recognized CDU’s College of Medicine as a Historically Black Graduate Institution. CDU is also a charter member of Hispanic Serving Health Professions schools.

“CDU’s mission and historically significant location provide us a very unique, yet pertinent role within the nation of training practitioners, to deliver culturally appropriate care,” said Dr. David M. Carlisle, president of Charles R. Drew.

“As the nation’s demographics become more diverse and disparities become more apparent, so does the need for excellent care delivered by diverse and culturally competent professionals. Our University’s mission is to cultivate diverse health professionals who are dedicated to social justice and health equity for underserved populations. This ranking further substantiates our commitment to developing diverse health professional leaders who are equipped with skills relevant to the rapidly developing health care priorities of the 21st century.”

More than 70% of CDU graduates since the year 2000 are from underrepresented backgrounds, and over 80% of alumni report serving in under-resourced communities following graduation.

“The University continues to rebuild and rebrand as a comprehensive mid-size university of excellence, while also never forgetting its historic legacy of enhancing the diversity of the health profession,” Carlisle said.

“This ranking further substantiates our commitment to cultivating diverse health professional leaders who are equipped with skills relevant to the rapidly developing health care priorities of the 21st century.”

They said that the university benefits from its location within the Watts-Willowbrook community and the corresponding diversity and complexities of its population by creating an “academic environment unlike any other.”

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