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Diversity

Feinberg embraces a broad definition of diversity that includes not only students from racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in medicine, but also other religious, gender and sexual identities, persons with disabilities and socioeconomic diversity. Learn more below.

What groups are considered underrepresented in medicine by Northwestern?

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine embraces a broad definition of diversity that includes not only students from racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in medicine, but also other religious, gender and sexual identities, persons with disabilities and socioeconomic diversity.

Twenty-two percent of the class of 2023 are from underrepresented racial and ethnic minority groups, which includes Blacks/African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Pacific Islanders, Native Americans, Native Hawaiians. Feinberg also includes members of the LGBTQ+ community and students with disabilities as underrepresented in medicine. Learn more about the groups represented via our Entering Class Profile page and our MD Student Body Profile page. For more information, please contact the Office of Diversity & Inclusion at 312-503-4473 or email diversitymed@northwestern.edu.

At Feinberg, we value having a student body that mirrors our local diverse community. Furthermore, we find it equally important to students to grow personally and professionally during their medical training by branching out to learn about new cultures and backgrounds. At Feinberg, our students do hold common values and beliefs: to pursue their medical training and to be their personal best. 

Hear firsthand from students what makes the Feinberg School of Medicine a unique environment.

Are diversity-related health issues part of the Feinberg curriculum?

We integrate diversity initiatives throughout our teaching, research and clinical activities. Chicago offers an incredible backdrop for MD training. The size and cultural diversity of our city allows us to infuse cultural competency training into our students’ clinical experiences, including our clinics in Chinatown and on Devon.

Learn more about how Chicago plays a part in the MD Curriculum.

How open and inclusive is the Feinberg environment to LGBTQ+ students, faculty and staff?

The Feinberg School of Medicine is welcoming to all groups from diverse backgrounds and experiences. Feinberg is home to the Northwestern Chicago Out Network, a social network of people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. Participants include students, faculty and staff from Northwestern schools and clinical affiliates on the Chicago campus. In addition, the student group Feinberg LGBTQ+ Alliance offers educational and other resources to students, faculty and staff. The group also provides information for prospective students.

I identify as LGBTQ+. Should I “come out” in my application?

We understand that coming out is a very personal decision and that many factors may influence your decision to be "out" in your medical school applications. Feinberg encourages students to be "out" in their applications, as we value diversity in all its forms and consider LGBTQ+ people underrepresented in medicine. Our admissions committee members receive special training to better understand LGBTQ+ issues and how LGBTQ+ life experiences strengthen an applicant. On the secondary application, we provide an optional question to indicate whether you identify as LGBTQ+ and an optional essay to describe your experiences in detail.

Is there a way for students to identify underrepresented in medicine faculty mentors?

Feinberg has a long-standing commitment to diversity and excellence. The Office of Diversity & Inclusion works with Feinberg students, residents, staff and faculty to further the mission to achieve a campus environment of belonging and inclusion for all. Mentoring programs are a key element to facilitate this initiative. The Office of Diversity & Inclusion will facilitate mentorship connections between students, faculty and residents that will foster career explorations and development, scholarship and collegiality. Events featuring students and faculty begin the first week of classes.

Does Feinberg interact with LGBTQ+ communities in Chicago? If so, how can students get involved?

Yes, Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine partners with organizations both on and off campus to deliver programming for current and prospective students. Northwestern Chicago Out Network is a group that began several years ago informally and quickly became a regular social networking group for the support and encouragement of LGBT faculty, staff, students, fellows and residents on the Northwestern Chicago campus. There are several LGBTQ+ resources on and off campus: AMSA’s Gender & Sexuality Committee, Gay Lesbian Medical Association and the Northwestern University Gay and Lesbian University Union.

How can I get in contact with LGBTQ+ current students to learn more?

 Applicants may email officers of the student group Feinberg LGBTQ+ Alliance to learn more. Interviewing students are invited to meet with current LGBTQ+ students as part of the Reach OUT program. Additionally, applicants are welcome to contact our Office of DIversity and Inclusion (diversitymed@northwestern.edu) for additional information on our LGBTQ+ community and resources available.