Agreement Between Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science and Ross University School of Medicine Designed to Alleviate Critical Physician Shortage

September 11, 2018
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Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science (CDU) and Ross University School of Medicine (RUSM) today announced an agreement to establish joint education programs that are expected to increase the number of physicians practicing in under-resourced areas, including in California.

The collaboration, to be announced at a signing ceremony at the South Los Angeles campus of CDU on September 12, 2018, will establish a pathway program at CDU giving preferred admission into the Doctor of Medicine (MD) program at RUSM to CDU post-baccalaureate students who meet admission criteria. Since 91 percent of CDU students are from California (with 70 percent from L.A. County) and more than 80 percent report returning to practice in underserved communities following graduation, it is likely that many of these students will return and provide much-needed care in Los Angeles.

“The intent of this exciting partnership is to take on the challenge of inadequate numbers of underrepresented minority doctors in the U.S. using novel student engagements, validated support programs, and senior level commitments to success,” said William F. Owen, Jr., MD, FACP, Dean and Chancellor RUSM.

“We feel this collaboration with RUSM is a tremendous opportunity for us both to help address one of the critical healthcare issues of our time: the shortage of primary care physicians in general, and in medically underserved communities of color, in particular,” said CDU President and CEO David M. Carlisle, MD, PhD. “It’s a creative approach by two organizations with a common purpose.”

This partnership is the first-of-its-kind for both institutions, uniting the highly regarded Southern California University with a high-quality international medical school in a common and socially-impactful purpose. RUSM has a history of educating diverse physicians with a high percentage of graduates – nearly 75 percent – choosing to practice in primary care. RUSM graduates are eligible to become licensed to practice in all 50 U.S. states, Canada and Puerto Rico, and RUSM is opening its new, permanent medical sciences campus in Barbados in January 2019.

“CDU actively seeks partnerships with educational institutions that share our mission of creating more access to medical education and graduating more healthcare professionals who will practice in chronically under-resourced areas,” said CDU Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost Steve O. Michael, PhD. “We have such a partner with RUSM.”

RUSM is a member of Adtalem Global Education, a mission-driven organization headquartered in Chicago that operates a portfolio of higher education institutions and professional education companies, including medical, nursing, veterinary and healthcare education institutions in the United States and internationally. Adtalem CEO Lisa Wardell, currently the only African-American female leading a Fortune 1000 company, stated, “This agreement is the embodiment of our vision to create a dynamic global community of life-long learners who improve the world. We are pleased to have RUSM collaborate with Charles R. Drew University Medicine and Science, and we look forward to the contributions these students will make to their communities as physicians.”

For more information, visit, and follow CDU on FacebookTwitter (@cdrewu), and Instagram(@charlesrdrewu).


CDU is a private, non-profit student centered minority-serving medical and health sciences university committed to cultivating diverse health professional leaders dedicated to social justice and health equity for underserved populations through outstanding education, research, clinical service, and community engagement. Located in the Watts-Willowbrook area of South Los Angeles, CDU has graduated more than 550 medical doctors, 2,700 post-graduate physicians, more than 1,200 physician assistants, 800 nurses and over a thousand other health professionals. CDU is a leader in health disparities research with a focus on education, training, treatment and care in cancer, diabetes, cardiometabolic diseases, and HIV/AIDS.


Ross University School of Medicine is a member of Adtalem Global Education (NYSE: ATGE), a global education provider headquartered in the United States. The organization's purpose is to empower students to achieve their goals, find success and make inspiring contributions to our global community. Founded in 1978, RUSM is committed to educating a diverse group of skilled physicians to serve as leaders in the U.S. healthcare system. With more than 14,000 alumni, RUSM is an important contributor to healthcare in North America. RUSM is accredited by the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and Other Health Professions (CAAM-HP). For more information, please visit

About Adtalem Global Education

The purpose of Adtalem Global Education is to empower students to achieve their goals, find success and make inspiring contributions to our global community. Adtalem Global Education Inc. (NYSE: ATGE; member S&P MidCap 400 Index) is a leading global education provider, and the parent organization of Adtalem Educacional do Brasil, American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists, Becker Professional Education, Carrington College, Chamberlain University, DeVry University and its Keller Graduate School of Management, EduPristine, Ross University School of Medicine and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine. For more information, visit


John Merryman, Director of Communications, CDU
(323) 563-4983 (office)
(310) 560-8976 (mobile)
Marci Grossman, Dir. of External Comm., RUSM
(847) 257-5649 (mobile)