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College of Human Medicine earns high national ranking for “social mission”

June 15, 2010

When it comes to “social mission” for producing doctors who are minorities, practice primary care and work in underserved areas, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine ranks among the top medical schools in the country according to a new national study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Of the 141 medical schools in the study, MSU College of Human Medicine received an overall Social Mission rank of 6th and a rank of 7th for underrepresented minorities in its student population.

“Our community-focused college is based on a social mission,” said Marsha D. Rappley, MD, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. “We respond to the needs of the medically underserved, whether it is training primary care doctors, providing students clinical experience with underserved populations or offering medical school admission opportunities to students who wish to practice in underserved areas of medicine.”

While MSU ranked high in the study, researchers concluded that medical schools vary substantially in their contribution to the social mission of medical education. Traditional assessments of medical schools often value research funding, student entrance test scores and subjective assessments over actual educational output of each school, particularly regarding the number of graduates who enter primary care, practice in underserved areas and are underrepresented minorities.

 “This is the first published journal study that measures the contributions made by community-focused medical schools like MSU,” added Dean Rappley. “It is an honor and a privilege to be a social mission leader among U.S. medical schools.”

For more information on “The Social Mission of Medical Education: Ranking the Schools,” visit