EAA048 Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Policy Number: EAA048
Policy Title: Diversity and Inclusion Policy

A. Purpose

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) School of Medicine strives to create and sustain a spirit of diversity, inclusion, and enrichment that fosters an environment of cultural competency, sensitivity and awareness. The UTRGV SOM goals stem from the School's unique geographic location at the border of U.S. and Mexico, a place with rich bicultural and family traditions, but also one burdened by health disparities. It inspires the SOM's dedication to research, the generation of new knowledge, public service, culturally aware care, and increasing underrepresented minorities in medicine. This cross-cultural understanding allows students, faculty and staff to embrace and celebrate distinctive perspectives and viewpoints that enrich all members of the UTRGV SOM. With a critical focus on the benefits of diversity in medicine and biomedical sciences, diversity and inclusion are essential to strengthening the communities that we serve and improving the health of the public.

B. Persons Affected

This policy will cover the faculty, residents, students, and senior administrative staff in the UTRGV SOM.

C. Definitions:

Senior Administrative: Individuals with title of Director and above who do not hold a faculty title or position.

Faculty: The group of individuals (both physician and non-physician) assigned to teach and supervise learners.

Resident: An individual enrolled in an ACGME-accredited residency or fellowship program.

Medical Student: Any person enrolled in any academic program and pursuing an MD degree (or MD-combined degree, such as MD-PhD) at a U.S. MD- or DO-granting medical school.

D. Policy

UTRGV SOM is committed to providing a diverse environment for faculty, students, residents and staff. Diversity at our SOM is defined as a community that appreciates values and seeks the different dimensions that all groups have to offer. In addition, we believe that education, research, and clinical endeavors are enriched and enhanced by a diverse environment. The Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Dean of Special Programs oversee the development of recruitment and retention programs that encourage and promote an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity in the faculty, staff, residents, and students.

UTRGV SOM is committed to recruiting and retaining students, faculty, residents, and staff from a variety of backgrounds. Differences in beliefs, opinions, perspectives, experiences, lifestyle, gender, sexual orientation, culture, and race/ethnicity all enrich the academic environment and thus are considered in the selection process.

UTRGV SOM uses a holistic approach in its admissions selection process to ensure a diverse student body that encompasses female gender, and race/ethnicity of any groups historically underrepresented in medicine (i.e. Black or African American; Hispanic or Latino - particularly of Mexican or Puerto Rican origin).

UTRGV SOM graduate medical education programs use a holistic approach in their residency selection processes to ensure a diverse learner group that encompasses any groups historically underrepresented in medicine (i.e. Black or African American; Female Gender; Hispanic or Latino - particularly of Mexican or Puerto Rican origin).

Faculty and Senior Administrative Staff
UTRGV SOM employs a standardized process for faculty and administrative staff (including senior administrative staff) recruitment, employment and retention, designed to enhance diversity from the following groups:

  • Female gender
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Black or African American

UTRGV SOM prioritizes systematic training of search committees, oversight of all faculty recruitments, strategies to increase pools of diverse faculty and staff applicants, and retention activities (e.g., pipeline programs and partnerships to achieve mission-appropriate diversity outcomes in its students and data collection).These strategies will assist UTRGV SOM in achieving measurable mission-appropriate diversity outcomes.

By embracing all communities (e.g. faculty, residents, senior administrative staff, students) and enhancing the cultural competency of all the current- and future-physicians it educates, UTRGV SOM provides an educational environment that is welcoming and respectful of diverse ideas, cultures, and people, while improving access to care for its underserved populations.

Appendix A

LCME Standard:


A medical school has effective policies and practices in place, and engages in ongoing, systematic, and focused recruitment and retention activities, to achieve mission-appropriate diversity outcomes among its faculty, residents, students, senior administrative staff, and other relevant members of its academic community. These activities include the use of programs and/or partnerships aimed at achieving diversity among qualifies applicants for medical school admission and the evaluation of program and partnerships outcomes.

ACGME Common Program Requirements:

Background and Intent: It is expected that the Sponsoring Institution has, and programs implement, policies and procedures related to recruitment and retention of minorities underrepresented in medicine and medical leadership in accordance with the Sponsoring Institution's mission and aims. The program's annual evaluation must include an assessment of the program's efforts to recruit and retain a diverse workforce, as noted in V.C.1.c).(5).(c).



AAMC Glossary


Dates Reviewed or Amended

Approved by the Diversity Committee on November 25, 2019.

Approved by the Faculty Assembly on December 12, 2019.

Approved by the Dean/Chief Academic Officer on December 12, 2019.

Reviewed by the Diversity Committee on October 21, 2021.

Reviewed by the Diversity Committee on May 5, 2022.