The Sophie Davis Biomedical Education Program at the CUNY School of Medicine

Serving the underserved.

There is a continuing shortage of primary care physicians in this country, creating an urgent need for more family practitioners, general internists, pediatricians and obstetricians/gynecologists in many communities. The shortage of African-Americans, Hispanic/Latinx, Native Americans and other underrepresented groups in medicine is particularly acute. Thus, recruiting and training a diverse workforce that represents the diversity of the patients in underserved communities is of utmost importance and ensures health equity across the continuum of care. 

Over forty-five years ago, CUNY and the City College of New York decided to make a difference by developing the most unique physician and physician assistant training programs in the nation – The Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education. Since its founding in 1973, The Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, now known as the CUNY School of Medicine/Sophie Davis Biomedical Education Program continues its original mission to recruit underrepresented populations into medicine, increase medical services in underserved areas, and increase the availability of primary care physicians and physician assistants that reflect the diversity of our country. This mission is currently served with a 55% enrollment rate of students from backgrounds that are Underrepresented in Medicine (URiM: African Americans, Hispanic/Latinx, and Native Americans), greatly exceeding the current U.S. medical school average.

The Sophie Davis Biomedical Education Program at the CUNY School of Medicine encompasses an innovative accelerated BS/MD program that combines a Bachelor of Science degree with an MD degree in seven years and a 28-month Physician Assistant Program that leads to a Masters degree in P.A. Studies and eligibility to take the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE).