SAN ANTONIO (Aug. 26, 2014) — The School of Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is the top medical school for Hispanics in the country, according to a national ranking released in the past week.
The School of Medicine comes in first among medical schools in Hispanic Business magazine’s Annual Diversity Report: Best Schools for Diversity Practices: Best Medical Schools. The California-based magazine released the U.S. rankings Aug. 20.
Survey parameters included number of Hispanics enrolled, retention rate, percentage of students receiving financial aid, M.D. degrees awarded, number of Hispanic full-time medical school faculty, and extent of programs that recruit and mentor Hispanic medical students.
During the 2012-13 academic year, 176 Hispanic students were enrolled in the School of Medicine. The school awarded 48 degrees to Hispanic students in 2013.
The Health Science Center, which operates campuses in Harlingen, Edinburg and Laredo as well as in San Antonio, has one of the largest concentrations of Hispanic faculty in the nation – nearly 150 full-time members. The School of Medicine participates in a number of recruitment and mentoring programs, including the Med Ed Program in the Rio Grande Valley, and Facilitated Admissions for South Texas Scholars, a program that identifies and assists students to enter the School of Medicine from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas A&M International University in Laredo and the former UT Pan American in Edinburg, now part of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.
“More than ever before, we are striving to connect with Hispanic students in San Antonio, the Rio Grande Valley and throughout the state,” said Francisco González-Scarano, M.D., dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for medical affairs at the Health Science Center. “Patients tend to relate better to physicians who are sensitive to their culture. For this reason, our School of Medicine places priority on graduating a diverse class that matches the demographics of Texas.”
“I commend Dean Gonzalez and the School of Medicine for the school’s strong focus on pipeline programming to attract Hispanic students into health and science careers, and for creating an environment of people and programs that leads to students’ retention once in medical school,” said William L. Henrich, M.D., M.A.C.P., president of the Health Science Center.
School of Medicine applicants are reviewed holistically, said David J. Jones, Ph.D., senior associate dean for admissions in the School of Medicine. “We look at the complete person, including academic excellence, educational background, community service, stated goals and all the qualities that would make one a competent and compassionate physician,” he said. “I am proud that we have been able to educate and train so many outstanding physicians who happen to be Hispanics.”
Nearly 20 percent of students in the School of Medicine are Hispanic, compared to the U.S. medical school average of 9 percent, reported by the Association of American Medical Colleges.
The School of Medicine has the stated goal of recruiting students who will be able to competently address the health care needs and priorities of the population of Texas, especially South Texas.
The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, one of the country’s leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving National Institutes of Health funding. The university’s schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced more than 29,000 graduates. The $765 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways “We make lives better®,” visit www.uthscsa.edu.