SOM Diversity Strategic Plan



School of Medicine Mission Statement


Our mission is to improve the health of our patients and the diverse communities we serve through excellence and leadership in education, clinical care, research, and community engagement.


Executive Mission


In order to best meet our health care challenges, we are actively partnering with our rural and urban communities to understand unique circumstances and needs, so that the SOM will provide excellent health care, while also training medical practitioners and researchers who are ready and able to serve the people of Kentucky and beyond. The SOM recognizes the unique contribution we are poised to make, based on the background, culture, experiences, and identity of each individual, and seeks to create an environment that is inclusive, welcoming, and supportive of all people.


Our Functional Definition for Diversity


The SOM utilizes a definition of diversity that supports the inclusion, welcome, and support of individuals from all groups encompassing the various characteristics of persons in our community. The characteristics include, but are not limited to: age, background, citizenship, disability, education, ethnicity, family status, gender, gender identity/expression, geographical location, language, military experience, political views, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and work experience. As a school of medicine, we are particularly focused on those populations that are traditionally underrepresented in medicine.


Tenets of the School of Medicine Diversity Plan: Who we are and what we do


Who we are - In an effort to better understand the current community engagement and diversity climate in the SOM, we must critically appraise the composition of the SOM (students, faculty, and staff), what it feels like to be part of the SOM, and the systems and structures in which we do our work. The purpose of examining these issues is to consider how we can create an equitable space within this environment for all people regardless of social identities. This part of the plan has three distinct components: presence, climate, and policy/practice.


Presence - Presence refers to the diversity headcount data of the institution and includes documenting the presence of faculty, students, staff, and senior administrators by race and by gender in accordance with LCME reporting requirements. However, in pursuit of a greater understanding of the diversity in our community, we are also gathering data that documents peer and pool data in a three-year cycle. Peer presence data are gathered to compare the SOM departments with regional and aspirant peer institutions (utilized for analysis with faculty, student, and senior administrators). Pool presence data is gathered by examining the local workforce demographic data (utilized for analysis for staff data). These analyses will be utilized to contextualize and understand our areas of strength as well as opportunities.


Climate - We are committed to promoting a climate of inclusiveness. We use both external and internal measures for assessment. Externally administered instruments utilized include the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Faculty Forward (targeting faculty members), the AAMC Staff Success (targeting staff members), the AAMC Graduation Questionnaire (GQ) and the AAMC Medical School Year Two Questionnaire (Y2Q). Internally, the SOM will engage in a series of short assessments, distributed in an ongoing basis that can be analyzed rapidly, so that action can be taken expeditiously. Further, there will be a qualitative component that will be completed though focus groups and interviews.

Policy/Practice - Policy/Practice refers to examination of the day-to-day operations of the organization. While easily taken for granted, standard operating procedures and policies have the potential to either promote equity or sustain inequity. By iteratively examining the policies and practices of our organization we can enhance equity and ensure that invisible or implicit injustices are not perpetuated. Policies and practice that we will investigate include: faculty recruitment, professional development opportunities, physical office space, opportunities for mentorship, promotion, and service commitments.


What we do - This refers to the activities that seek to engage the community, promote health equity regionally, nationally, and globally, and increase and support mutually beneficial partnerships and collaborations with the community and with other disciplines within the university. Further, this section captures the need to ensure that we are educating and developing skills and competencies around diversity and inclusion. With respect to what we do, the expectations shift to documenting activities and initiatives, as well as ensuring that these activities are assessed on an ongoing basis to ensure the efficacy of our efforts. There are three categories from which we will be gathering information:

Community Engagement- Defined by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, community engagement is the collaboration between institutions of higher education and their larger communities (local, regional/state, national, global) for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity. Functionally, this means that the SOM will collaborate with our community partners to promote health, as well as build educational opportunities that prepare students for careers in medicine. Our location and commitment to the University of Louisville Signature Partnership Initiative (SPI) lead our focus and efforts to the West Louisville community.

Pipeline and Workforce Development- The documented critical need for greater diversity in the physician/faculty workforce across all of the underrepresented social identities (race, gender, sexual orientation, rural status, to name just a few) guide our efforts to develop education and workforce pipelines. For the SOM, this means that greater consideration for the UME/GME/CME pipeline to faculty must be considered within each department. Further, efforts to reach farther back in the pipeline to ensure that not only are college students well-prepared for matriculation to medical school/graduate school, but that high school students are well-prepared for matriculation to college, and junior high students are well-prepared for attending high school. Our location and commitment to the University of Louisville Signature Partnership Initiative (SPI) lead our focus and efforts to particular schools in West Louisville.

Curriculum and Professional Development- The activities that we undertake with our faculty, staff, and students in order to promote an understanding of diversity, cultural competence, and the social construction of inequality guide our curriculum and professional development. These learning opportunities are central higher learning and are supported by robust literature. In order to reach all of our SOM constituents, opportunities to engage these lessons must be wide and broad in scope and context. Examples include the opportunities that the SMART organization has created, lessons and assignments that students complete for class, and professional development that targets our faculty and senior administrative staff. The work of eQuality is particularly powerful, as it targets each of these constituent groups with lessons to expand learning.


Data and Reporting

This data driven process ensures that each department and administrative unit is accountable for our diversity goals. It is important that all members of the SOM community are engaged in this work. By collectively measuring our diversity work, we can demonstrate the efficacy of our efforts, and make incremental progress in reaching our full potential. The following data is not exhaustive, but will provide the SOM with a starting point for considering who we are and what we do.


Who we are


  • Headcount data for the SOM (by race, gender, and rural status)
  • Headcount data for a minimum of three peer/aspirant departments or units (by race and gender) [can be gathered from the AAMC or by partnering with peer institutions and offering them our data]
  • Conduct an analysis of the findings from the data and a description of a plan for improvement (where necessary)



  • Some Departmental/SOM level data will be provided on an ongoing basis by the Office of Community Engagement and Diversity, so each department will be responsible for describing efforts to respond to climate themes
  • Data will also be provided from external assessments including from the AAMC: Faculty Forward, Staff Success, the Graduation Questionnaire (GQ) and the Year Two Questionnaire (Y2Q)
  • Assess the efforts to respond to any emergent climate themes, including a plan for continuous quality improvement
  • Conduct an analysis of the findings from the data and a description of a plan for improvement (where necessary)



  • Each department will be responsible for identifying a policy or practice within the unit and investigating the outcomes of the policy or practice relative to a diversity metric. For example, institutions in the past have chosen to investigate a number of practices by race or gender (professional development dollars spent, analyzed by race and/or gender; or lab space analyzed by race and/or gender)
  • Conduct an analysis of the findings from the data and a description of a plan for improvement (where necessary)


What we do

Community Engagement

  • Document the initiatives that have occurred, consistent with the Office of Community Engagement report, including outcomes data


Pipeline and Workforce Development

  • Document the initiatives that have occurred, including outcomes data
  • Assess the efforts to develop effective pipelines, including a plan for continuous quality improvement
  • In future iterations, link the Pipeline and Workforce Development data with the Presence data to determine yield


Curriculum and Professional Development

  • Document educational opportunities for faculty, staff, and students
  • Assess each opportunity, including a plan for continuous quality improvement
  • Conduct an analysis of the findings from the assessment and a description of a plan for improvement (where necessary)


Governance and Oversight


The success of this plan will be driven by wide support and participation among those in the SOM, as well as thoughtful processes to understand and address issues that may exist in departments and within the SOM broadly. To this end, the Dean will appoint the SOM Diversity Committee, made up of thought and opinion leaders from across the SOM who will assist in the deployment of this plan, analysis of the data, and by providing critical feedback to guide future directions. Some examples of possible projects undertaken by the committee include: assisting in creating questions for the climate assessments, providing suggestions for the planning and implementation of policy studies, reviewing and analyzing data, participating in opportunities to engage colleagues around the scholarship of cultural competence, critical pedagogy, implicit bias, social determinants of health, etc. Members of this SOM Diversity Committee will be appointment to a fixed term on a rolling basis.

Each year, the department chairs and unit leaders will make a report (perhaps to a joint meeting of the Med Council and SOM Diversity Committee) to share what each department/unit has undertaken and what steps were taken to improve the presence, climate, and policy/practice for the department/unit.




In pursuit of these measurable objectives, each department/unit within the SOM will be a full partner in pursuing excellence in diversity. This plan allows for flexibility among departments and units, so that local issues and concerns can be adequately understood, addressed, and assessed.


University of Louisville Reaffirmation of Commitment to Equal Educational & Employment Opportunity


The University of Louisville is committed to and will provide equality of educational and employment opportunity for all persons regardless of race, sex, age, color, national origin, ethnicity, creed, religion, disability, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and expression, marital status, pregnancy, or veteran status – except where sex, age, or ability represent bona fide educational or employment qualifications or where marital or veteran status are statutorily defined eligibility criteria for Federal or State benefit programs. Further, the university seeks to promote campus diversity by enrolling and employing a larger number of minorities and women where these groups have historically been and continue to be under-represented within the university in relation to availability and may extend preference in initial employment to such individuals among substantially equally qualified candidates, as well as to veterans.


This affirmation is published in accordance with 41 CFR 60 and is in keeping with Title VII & Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Executive Order 11246; the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974; the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1988 and Kentucky Statutes. The university aims to achieve, within all areas of the university community, a diverse student body, faculty, and staff capable of providing for excellence in the education of its students and for the enrichment of the university community.


Unlawful Harassment, Personal Discrimination, and Retaliation


The University of Louisville's Discriminatory Harassment Policy reflects the commitment to maintain a community that is free from harassment of any kind. Harassment of any kind is not acceptable at the university. It is inconsistent with the university's commitment to excellence and respect for all individuals. The university is also committed to protecting the academic freedom and freedom of expression of all members of the university community. Academic freedom and freedom of expression includes, but is not limited to, the expression of ideas, however controversial, in the classroom, residence hall, and in keeping with different responsibilities, in work places elsewhere in the university community. The University of Louisville strives to provide equal employment opportunity on the basis of merit and without unlawful discrimination in terms of race, sex, age, color, national origin, ethnicity, creed, religion, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, pregnancy, or disability of an otherwise qualified individual. In addition, the university prohibits job discrimination of Vietnam era veterans, qualified special disabled veterans, recently separated veterans, and other protected veterans. The university shall make every reasonable effort to select all staff from applicant pools which are representative of the labor market in terms of sex, disability, minority, and veteran status.


Furthermore, the university shall not subject employees to unlawful discrimination in terms of compensation, benefits, and/or working conditions.


For more information concerning ways in which our multicultural learning community may be nurtured and protected or complaint resolution procedures, contact the Dean of Student Affairs, the Vice Provost of Diversity and International Programs, or the Vice President for Human Resources and EEO Officer.

School of Medicine - Diversity Planning Template for Academic Year 2018-2019



Goal 1: Increase Medical Student Enrollment of Underrepresented Minorities (URM), with special emphasis on African Americans and Hispanic/Latinos

Measurable Outcome(s)


1. In the MD Program, recruit and enroll at least 10% URM students or more into the 1st year medical class during Academic Year (AY) 2018-2019


2. Continue to provide financial aid and scholarship assistance for URM students enrolling in the MD Program


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Attend local recruiting fairs at the University of Louisville and other post-secondary institutions across the Commonwealth of Kentucky and Southern Indiana
  • Continue to collaborate with the Health Science Office of Diversity and Inclusion to maintain existing pipeline programs like the: Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP), the Summer Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) and Dental Admissions Test (DAT) Workshop (MCAT/DAT), the Medical Education Development (MED) Program, and the Post-Bach Pre-Med Program
  • Foster working partnerships with the Multicultural Association of Pre-Health Students (MAPS) Chapters at the University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, and Kentucky State University
  • Creation of a new guaranteed assurance pipeline program for undergraduate students in the Society of Porter Scholars and Hispanic Latino Initiative (HLI) on the UofL Belknap campus
  • The Admissions Scholarship Committee will continue to work with the Deans Office and Financial Aid Office to identify funding sources to support URM scholarships for AY 2018


How will this be assessed?

  • By reviewing application data to determine if there is an increased number of URM applications resulting from recruitment efforts
  • By reviewing interview data to determine if the number of URM admissions interviews increased compared to the previous year
  • Continued success in enrolling URM participants from existing pipeline programs
  • Successful program creation during AY 2018-2019 in preparation for implementation and identification of talented Porter Scholar and HLI participants during the AY 2019-2020
  • Allocation/Awarding of URM scholarships for AY 2018


Goal 2: Increase Graduate/Professional Student Enrollment of Underrepresented Minorities (URM), with special emphasis on African Americans and Hispanic/Latinos

Measurable Outcome(s)


1. In the Integrated Programs in Biomedical Sciences (IPIBS), establish and maintain enrollment of 20% URM students

2. In the Audiology (AUDI) and Communicative Disorders (CMDS) graduate programs where over 90% of students are white females, increase diversity twofold over the next two academic years


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Attend local recruiting fairs at University of Louisville, University of Kentucky, Kentucky Wesleyan, Western Kentucky, Kentucky State, and others if accepted
  • Attend and recruit potential students at national STEM focused events for minorities such as ABRCMS and SACNAS conferences, and the NIH Graduate and Professional Recruiting Fair
  • Coordinate recruiting efforts with Dr. Latonia Craig and the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies (SIGS) who attends some of the conferences noted above with us
  • Coordinate with faculty in our graduate programs who attend scientific conferences to recruit potential URM students
  • Dr. Salter will attend the McNair Graduate School Preparation Camp in June to present and recruit students
  • Present and recruit potential URM students at R25 Cancer Biology and Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) programs during the 2018 summer program
  • During applicant interview/recruiting events each year, make certain that URM applicants meet with current URM students and have all questions and concerns answered
  • Encourage graduate programs to nominate URM applicants for awards such as Diversity Fellowships and Presidential Awards that are offered by SIGS


How will this be assessed?

  • Increasing enrollment requires increased contact with potential applicants. In all recruiting events listed in the previous section, we will aim to collect demographic information on more than 300 potential students per year
  • The names and demographic information about these students will be distributed to individual graduate programs
  • The IPIBS office follows up with each contact made by personal email shortly after the meeting
  • Applications from individuals who learned about our programs at these events will be noted so that we can gauge effectiveness for future attendance
  • All incoming URM students are interviewed to determine how they learned about our programs, and how we might improve recruiting



Goal 1: Increase 6 year Graduation Rate and number of Degrees Conferred for Underrepresented Minorities (URM), with special emphasis on African Americans and Hispanic/Latinos

Measurable Outcome(s)

1. Continue to maintain a 6 year graduation rate of 94% for URM students

2. Continue to confer 6.2% or higher of the SOM degrees to URM MD students

3. Continue to confer 5% or higher of the SOM degrees to Masters and PhD URM students


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Continue to utilize existing student support services to enhance the retention and graduation rates of our URM students. This includes but not limited to: The Office of Medical Student Affairs, Student Advisory Colleges, Office of Community Engagement and Diversity, Diversity Committee, Undergraduate Medical Education, Graduate Medical Education, and the Office of Postdoctoral Studies and Integrated Programs in Biomedical Sciences



  • Creation of a Coordinator for Minority/Underrepresented Student Support Service position that will focus on providing direct support to URM’s
  • Continue to support existing student organizations for URM students: Student National Medical Association (SNMA), Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), Minority Association of Graduate Students (MAGS), Black Biomedical Graduate Student Organization (BBGSO), Medical Spanish Club (MSC), and HSC Diversity Alliance for Residents and Fellows


How will this be assessed?

  • Increased URM access and engagement with offices that support retention, as well as, increased engagement with the Student Success Coordinator in the Office of Medical Student Affairs
  • Successful hiring and on-boarding of a Coordinator for Minority/Underrepresented Student Support Service during AY 2018-2019
  • Allocation of program funding to support the SOM recognized student organizations


Goal 2: Increase 6 year Graduation Rate and number of Degrees Conferred of Low Income students

Measurable Outcome(s)

1. Given the limited data on “low-income” professional students, the SOM will continue to focusing efforts on graduating students who self-identify as being from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Continue to provide financial aid and scholarship assistance to students from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds
  • Continue to provide funding as available for student debt reduction


How will this be assessed?

  • Review the allocation of funding provided to support students who come from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds at the end of the academic year
  • Identification of additional funds to help off-set the cost of attendance and reduce the student debt incurred by students



Goal 1: Increase number of Underrepresented Minorities (URM) among Executive, Administrative and Managerial Employees hired and retained

Measurable Outcome


1. Review presence (numbers) of URM (African-American and Hispanic) and women in decanal reporting and executive positions within the School of Medicine on an annual basis but in comparison to employment data over a rolling 3 year window. The goal is to see a trend showing retention or an increase in URM presence among the Dean’s staff and Department Chairs


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal


  • The leadership of the School of Medicine assigns a high priority to diversity and as such looks at each hire as a prospective opportunity to diversity the Executive, Administrative and Managerial employees hired by the School into these positions. At present there are no vacant positions at the decanal reporting level within the School. The SOM has been able to retain URM decanal reports by pro-active retention efforts and internal recruitment


How will this be assessed?

  • Annual review of the decanal, executive and department chair positions in the School as part of the LCME accreditation CQI process


Goal 2: Increase number of Underrepresented Minorities (URM) among Faculty hired and retained

Measurable Outcome

1. Continue to provide dedicated incentive funding via the Dean to enhance the recruitment of URM faculty members


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Look for opportunities to recruit potential URM faculty members among graduating SOM URM Residents and Fellows, as well as, professional conferences attended by faculty and administrators


How will this be assessed?

  • URM faculty hires and/or the amount of incentive funding accessed by departments who hire URM faculty members


Goal 3: Increase number of Underrepresented Minorities (URM) among Professional Staff hired and retained

Measurable Outcome(s)

1. Number of staff development programs provided in the 2018 academic year addressing inclusion, diversity and bias

2. Review of representation of URM in the SOM workforce

3. Continue work on University wide initiatives promoting an inclusive climate and diversity


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • The school is actively engaged in cultivating a climate that supports inclusive hiring and raises awareness of the value added in having a diverse work force. The School regularly engages in programming for staff to elevate understanding of the added value of inclusion and diversity. In 2018 the School will work to extend training held in previous years in relation to Implicit Bias. In addition the School of Medicine Advancement Retention and Training Program (SMART) for Staff has recruited more diverse representation among the SMART leadership group in 2018. Two members of the Dean’s Staff serve on the Executive Committee of the UofL Commission for Diversity and Racial Equality assuring active engagement in efforts to promote diversity university-wide


How will this be assessed?

  • Annual review of SMART programming and program evaluations
  • Review of SOM staff employment data assessing trends over rolling three year periods



  • Review of UofL and SOM Climate assessment data
  • Continued participation in University wide climate improvement efforts such as CODRE, University Climate Committee, University Diversity Committee, and the university group working to re-establish a Black Faculty and Staff Association



Goal 1: What efforts are being to ensure a positive campus climate, promote inclusiveness, and ensure that students and employees are culturally competent?

Measurable Outcome(s)

1. You Belong Campaign

2. eQuality Program – LGBT Health Curriculum

3. Culturally Effective Care Symposium (CECS) for 1st year Medical Students

4. Cultural Competence Lectures in the Medical School Curriculum

5. LGBTQ Certificate Program


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • On-going implementation of the You Belong Campaign flyers, posters, yard signs, window clings, as well as, flyers displayed on SOM websites and building TV monitors
  • Continue to be a national leader by implementing the eQuality Program, a comprehensive curriculum that requires students to learn, practice, and demonstrate mastery of skills, knowledge, and attitudes required for excellent care of LGBT patients
  • Collaborate with the HSC Office of Diversity and Inclusion by having first year students participate in the Culturally Effective Care Symposium which provides inter-professional education on health care disparities and health equity for underserved populations like the LGBT and Immigrant/Refugee communities
  • In conjunction with the Undergraduate Medical Education (UME) and Office of Community Engagement and Diversity (OCED), lectures are offered to students on Race in Medicine, Empathy and Compassion in Healthcare, Social Determinants of Health, and Medical Anthropology. In addition, By-stander, Implicit-bias, and Micro-aggressions training is offered to staff via the SMART program
  • In partnership with the HSC LGBT Office, the LGBT certificate program is offered to educate students, faculty, staff, and the community at-large about the necessity for culturally competent physicians that are knowledgeable about LGBT health issues


How will this be assessed?

  • The You Belong campaign will be assessed by the number and type of responses received via the OCED service account email throughout AY 2018-2019
  • Successful implementation of the eQuality curriculum and lecture evaluations will be used to measure effectiveness of the program
  • Medical student attendance and program pre & post evaluations will be used to assess the Culturally Effective Care Symposium
  • Course evaluations will be used to assess lectures and trainings offered to students and staff
  • The number of participants who sign-up and complete the LGBT certificate program as well as evaluations will be used to assess the program



If there are other initiatives in your unit that support diversity and/or are designed improve campus climate, feel free to provide additional information here

1. Climate focus groups

2. Faculty Diversity Reps (FDR) Initiative


Strategies/Tactics to Achieve Goal

  • Focus groups with staff, house staff, trainees, and IPIBS students will continue to be convened as a follow-up to the Race Climate Survey implemented during AY 2017-2018
  • Continue development of training sessions to enhance the knowledgebase of the departmental FDRs


How will this be assessed?

  • Analyzation of focus group transcriptions will be used to identify emerging themes to generate recommendations for climate improvement
  • This initiative will be assessed by the number of training sessions provided to FDRs that include but not limited to: Implicit Bias, Healthcare Workforce Diversity and Inclusion, Search Committee Training, and etc.