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Temple Works to Increase the Number of Black Men in Medicine

News November 22, 2021

Black Men in MedicineBlack male physicians at Temple gathered in the Lewis Katz School of Medicine’s Medical Education and Research Building on Nov. 5 for the third annual Evening for Black Men in Medicine: an event celebrating the achievements of and offering mentorship opportunities for Black premedical and medical students as they make their way into the medical field. 

The evening was part of the Office of Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion’s efforts to recruit, support, retain and advance high-quality medical students from backgrounds that are historically underrepresented in medicine, as well as to specifically address the ongoing shortage of Black men in medicine.

Black male medical students accounted for just 3.1% of the national medical student body in 1978. By 2019, the figure had declined to 2.9%. And the number of Black male matriculants to medical schools for more than 40 years has not surpassed the numbers in 1978. 

According to a 2015 report by the Association of American Medical Colleges, there were 542 Black male matriculants in medical school in 1978. That was reduced to 515 in 2014. 

Black Men in Medicine - LKSOM

The participants in attendance represented a range of Black male doctors from the Katz School of Medicine, Temple University Health System and the Greater Philadelphia region. Alongside them were pre-med students identified through Temple’s Pre-professional Health Studies Office, primarily from Temple and other local area colleges and universities, plus Temple medical students.

Abiona Berkeley, MD, JD, FASA, the Interim Senior Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the Katz School of Medicine, and Amy J. Goldberg, MD, FACS, the school's Interim Dean, were the first two speakers at the event. 

Steuart Wright, a Black medical student at Temple, introduced Temple President Jason Wingard as a guest speaker.

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