Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

UCSF United Against Racism

Anti-Oppression Student Check-In (2021) 


Building the Most Equitable, Inclusive Medical School Nationally

At UCSF’s School of Medicine, diversity is a critical component of institutional success and has been a driving value of the institution for decades. From the launch of our outreach and pipeline programs more than 20 years ago to the establishment of the Differences Matter initiative in 2015, we strive to create equitable and inclusive environments because we believe they are essential to high-quality patient care, effective learning, and cutting-edge discovery.

    Our School of Medicine has three main goals to address both structural racism and interpersonal biases that contribute to inequities in healthcare for patients and education for students. Learn more about the collaborative programs and initiatives associated with each goal below or review our leadership messages on anti-racism.

    Goal 1: Create a model anti-oppressive curriculum that incorporates anti-oppressive content across all disciplines and experiences

    Expanded Anti-Oppressive Curriculum (2020)

    UCSF School of Medicine launched a new initiative in 2020 to expand existing curriculum to address issues of structural racism in science and health care. The initiative takes an explicitly anti-racist approach, which advocates for interventions against racism instead of merely being not racist.

    UCSF School of Medicine Appoints Leadership Team for Three-Year Anti-Oppressive Curriculum Initiative

    Anti-Racism Bridges Curriculum Update – August 2020

    Social Justice Pillar in the Bridges Curriculum (2016):

    Updated MD Competency Milestones (2017) 

    The school revised its competency milestones in 2017 to require all students to graduate with an understanding and sensitivity to race/ethnicity and social justice.

    MD Competency Milestones

    Focus on Equity in Assessment

    • The School of Medicine eliminated honors grades in core clerkships in 2019 to improve equity and wellbeing. The way medical students are traditionally assessed in clerkships discourages learning, increases stress, and offers little useful feedback, and is particularly problematic for students from underrepresented backgrounds. 
    • Because the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society (AOA) has demonstrated bias against non-white students in selection, the UCSF School of Medicine suspended affiliation with AOA in 2020. 
    • Faculty and students partnered together to create these assessment practices and strategies to avoid harmful bias in assessments.
    GOAL 2: Provide a supportive student environment to meet the unique needs of a diverse student body

    Student Support Programs

    Learn more about UCSF’s diversity, equity and inclusion student support programs for medical students.

    Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Programs for Students

    Revised Student Policies

    Guidelines at the School of Medicine ensure that UCSF provides an inclusive, equitable learning environment that protects equity in assessment and ensures institutional diversity: 

    Equity in Learning and AssessmenT (2020) 

    workforce and institutional diversitY (2018)

    Medical Student MistreatmenT (2020)​​​​​​

    Building a Pipeline of Diverse Students

    The School of Medicine's Office of Post Baccalaureate and Outreach Programs has directs outreach efforts for undergraduate and postgraduate individuals underrepresented in medicine, socioeconomically disadvantaged, and from rural communities, who are interested in pursuing careers in medicine. 

    UCSF's Post Baccalaureate Program

    Students Honored for Anti-Racism Work 

    The School of Medicine recognizes some of its most outstanding community members with Commendations for Exceptional Volunteerism and University Service, acknowledging contributions to the school’s anti-racism work. 



    GOAL 3: Diversify and train the faculty who teach and mentor students to teach with an anti-racism mindset

    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Champion Training 

    This training for School of Medicine faculty and staff includes education on implicit biases and microaggressions, coaching in skills related to addressing these issues, and how to apply thoughtful, active listening.

    DEI Champion Training

    Equity Justice in Education Program (EJE)

    The Center for Faculty Educators hosts EJE  meetings to empower educators, educational researchers, and learners to utilize rigorous educational research methodology to identify bias and unequal power distribution.  

    Teach for UCSF/EJE

    Differences Matter

    A multi-year, multi-faceted School of Medicine initiative designed to make UCSF the most diverse, equitable and inclusive academic medical system in the country.

    Differences Matter

    Chairs and Directors Council on Diversity

    Initiated in the Spring of 2014 and charged with developing, implementing and monitoring programs to increase the culture of diversity and inclusion in faculty within the School of Medicine.

    Chairs and Directors Council on Diversity

    Watson Scholars

    Each year eight faculty members are selected to be Watson Scholars in honor of John A. Watson, PhD, a pioneer for diversity, an inspiring mentor, and a tenacious scientist whose service to the UCSF School of Medicine spanned forty-six years.

    Watson Scholars

    Office of Outreach and Diversity

    The Office of Diversity and Outreach serves as the campus and health system leader in building diversity in all aspects of UCSF through ongoing assessment, development of new programs and building consensus. They collaborate with the four professional schools, the Graduate Division, and the medical centers, to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion across UCSF.

    Office of Outreach and Diversity


    The events of 2020 has reminded us again of this urgency and encouraged us to rethink our diversity, equity and inclusion focus, which is shaped by the belief that physicians need to be prepared to do the following:  

    • Provide safe, equitable, high-quality, and respectful care to an increasingly diverse population of people, in a manner aligned with the elicited goals of those individuals and their families
    • Apply existing and discover new knowledge to solve the complex problems that cause suffering and rob people of their opportunity to live long and productive lives
    • Lead and support interprofessional teams, comprised of diverse individuals with multiple points of view
    • Dismantle the structural oppression that exists within medicine and health care

    Medical Education Leadership Messages About Anti-Racism

    Daunte Wright - Anti-Black Police Violence Racial and Sociopolitical Trauma (April, 2021) 

    Standing in Solidarity - Mass Shootings (April, 2021)

    Anti-Asian Violence Atlanta Shooting Racial and Sociopolitical Trauma Protocol (March, 2021)

    Anti-Asian Violence Racial and Sociopolitical Protocol (February, 2021)

    Attack on US Capitol Racial and Social Political Trauma Protocol (January, 2021)

    Equity in Assessment (November, 2020)

    Reproductive Injustice (November, 2020)

    Election Week Support (October, 2020)

    Breonna Taylor - Taking Care of Yourself in Challenging Times (September, 2020)

    Jacob Blake Racial and Sociopolitical Trauma Protocol (August, 2020)

    Anti-Racism Bridges Curriculum Updates (August, 2020)

    What Educators Can Expect in the Fall (July, 2020)

    Declaring Police Violence a Public Health Issue (July, 2020)