Stanford’s Pre-Med Diversity Program Is Back

PALO ALTO (KCBS) – Stanford has revived a program aimed at increasing the number of minority students seeking admission to its medical school. That number had essentially fallen flat over the last 20 years.

The program was shut down three years ago because of a lack of federal funding. The program was recently reinstated after the university received a $3 million federal grant.

KCBS’ Mike Colgan Reports:

The funding would allow Stanford to make a series of connections with California State University and community college students around the Bay Area.

“We believe that by giving them information early in their career it will help guide them and prepare them for the health professions,” explained Ronald Garcia, PhD, assistant dean for minority affairs at Stanford University School of Medicine.

“You can look at the last 20 years in terms of medicine and it’s been a flat line, you know, almost 10%, 12% something like that for all these years. So programs like this are just really key in terms of contributing to that diversity.”

He described a sense of shock when he studied the numbers.

“We’re talking about 150, 160 Native Americans in the entire country going into medicine.”

He hoped that the newly revived program would help clarify the application process for minorities.

“I don’t believe that applying to medical school is a very intuitive process at all. There’s a lot of steps that you need to take to put your portfolio together and so I’d like to sort of think of what I do is demystifying that process early and in a timely fashion.”

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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