Resource Library >> Social Mission Case Example

Florida International University

The Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine at FIU, a Hispanic-serving institution, explicitly incorporates diversity and social accountability in its mission statement. It is the second most diverse medical school in the United States.

The MD curriculum is community-based and includes social accountability competencies. There are interest groups for students of color, religious minorities, students with disabilities, and people interested in health policy and social responsibility, among other topics. A student and faculty-led free clinic serves community members. Students are placed in learning communities to receive peer and faculty support. Programs exist for undergraduate students to learn about the medical school admissions process.

One of FIU’s flagship programs is the Green Family Foundation Neighborhood Health Education Learning Program (NeighborhoodHELP). This program places medical students (and physician assistant students) in interprofessional teams to conduct household visits and develop plans to improve the household’s quality of life. A review of the program found that from 2010 to 2016, nearly 1,500 students visited 848 households and treated families through mobile clinics and a mobile mammography center. Graduates were more experienced in interprofessional work and addressing health disparities and were highly rated on relevant skills during residency. In 2020, NeighborhoodHELP received the Macy Award for Program Excellence. It has also been recognized twice by the Association for Medical Education in Europe.

FIU hosted the 2016 Beyond Flexner Conference.

Join Our Newsletter