Diversity is an integral element of our medical school experience. Our Office of Diversity and Inclusion and many diverse programs show our commitment to diversity.

Our Mission

The University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine values diversity and its essential role in achieving the educational, scholarship, and service missions of the school. Therefore, the medical school is committed to both recruitment and retention of students, residents, faculty, and staff who through their diversity enrich the learning environment and promote inclusive excellence. We recognize diversity as relating to race, ethnicity, creed, rural background, socioeconomic status, gender, sexual orientation, age, and disability. In addition, we value persons with broad life experiences, with records of service to disadvantaged populations, and with other attributes that may enhance the learning community.

The medical school has chosen three areas of emphasis on diversity to enrich the learning environment and promote inclusive excellence: American Indians, rural, and gender.

USD Diversity Programs

Learn more about the USD programs and groups that promote diversity on campus including:

  • Indians into Medicine (INMED) Satellite Office

  • Native American Scholars Program (NASP)

  • American Indian Sciences and Engineering Society (AISES)

  • Healthcare Career Summer Camp (HCSC)

  • Asniya Elective

  • SSOM Cultural Colloquium

  • SSOM Diversity Dialogues

  • SSOM Diversity Health Affairs Committee

SSOM Office of Diversity and Inclusion

Our office plays a key role in directing efforts to enhance the diversity of the School of Medicine. We promote a welcoming and inclusive environment for our students, faculty and staff. We do this through a variety of direct programing, formulating and carrying out strategic plans and by serving as a resource for consultation and support of the students, faculty and staff of the School of Medicine. The Office of Diversity and Inclusion works collaboratively to promote Inclusive Excellence at the University of South Dakota.

Our Office Responsibilities

  • Directs the SSOM Indians into Medicine (INMED ) Satellite Office and serves to support INMED –related activities in South Dakota and the region.

  • Supports recruitment of American Indian high school students from South Dakota and the region to careers in medicine and other healthcare professions.

  • Directs the Native American Scholars Program (NASP) which serves to advise, mentor and support USD Native American students interested in pursuing careers in medicine and other health care professions.

  • Directs the USD Chapter of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES).

  • Directs the annual week-long Healthcare Career Summer Camp for high school students in South Dakota and nearby areas of Iowa, Nebraska and Minnesota.

  • Directs the Diversity Dialogues Seminar series.

  • Participates in planning the Cultural Awareness Colloquium for Pillar 3 medical students.

  • Directs the ASNIYA teaching-service learning elective for Pillar 3 medical students.

  • Directs the Diversity Health Affairs Committee comprised of faculty and student representatives of the Sanford School of Medicine and the USD School of Health Sciences.

  • Participates on the USD President’s Council on Diversity and Inclusiveness.

  • Serves as the SSOM representative to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Central region Group on Student Diversity Affairs.

  • Is a member of Pathways into Health, a national organization designed to enhance opportunities for American Indian/Alaskan Natives to address health disparities and enhance participation in careers in healthcare professions