Supporting BUSM

Contributions from alumni, friends, parents, and various companies and foundations enable the School of Medicine’s students, faculty, and staff to pursue educational and research activities that would not otherwise be possible. And you can join them!

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The Boston University School of Medicine is on the frontiers of scientific and medical knowledge—and has been for more than 130 years.

Mission statement

Boston University School of Medicine is dedicated to the educational, intellectual, professional, and personal development of a diverse group of exceptional students, trainees, and faculty who are deeply committed to the study and to the practice of medicine, to biomedical research, and to the health of the public. We, as a community, place great value on excellence, integrity, service, social justice, collegiality, equality of opportunity, and interdisciplinary collaboration.

BUSM Today

Throughout its history, BUSM has embodied and demonstrated a strong commitment to the study and practice of medicine, based on a mission of service to society. Today, the School is nationally recognized for providing outstanding clinical education in 25 affiliated hospitals, 15 neighborhood health centers, and numerous private clinics and doctors’ offices. BUSM is currently educating almost 700 medical degree students and more than 800 master’s and doctoral degree students of exceptional qualification and experience. The education we offer is in high demand—this year 11,000 applicants vied for 140 seats in the entering class. In 2011, U.S. News & World Report ranked BUSM 34th among U.S. medical schools.

BUSM is also home to one of the nation’s largest and most rapidly growing school-based medical research programs. The School’s highly accomplished faculty—which includes such luminaries as Nobel Prize winner Osamu Shimomura—conduct 640 funded research programs that total more than $175 million in support. The School is a world leader in the study of chronic traumatic encephalopathy and amyloidosis. Other prominent research efforts include:

  • The National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories. The new National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories facility represents a major step forward at BUSM in advancing public health and biomedical research. The biocontainment laboratory is one of only a handful of such laboratories in the nation, developed in partnership with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Its mission is to develop diagnostic drugs, vaccines and treatments to prevent and cure life- threatening infectious diseases. A state-of-the-art BS Level 4 Laboratory is housed within this 194,000 square foot facility.
  • The Framingham Heart Study. The Framingham Heart Study, which has been administered by BUSM faculty in cooperation with National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute since 1971, was initiated in 1948 to identify factors contributing to cardiovascular disease. For the past 60 years, the study participants—now including children and grandchildren of the original group—have returned every two years to undergo a detailed medical history, physical examination and laboratory tests, providing BUSM and other researchers a wealth of information on cardiovascular disease and a host of factors that affect physical and cognitive health.

Proud traditions and BUSM firsts

We’re proud of our history, which is rich with groundbreaking and exceptional achievements. In 1873, Boston University merged with the New England Female Medical College—the first U.S. institution to train women in medicine, and the first to graduate a black female physician. The BU School of Medicine was thus created as the first coeducational medical school in the country.

Many other firsts followed. BUSM also:

  • Graduated the first Native American MD, Charles Eastman (MED’1890), who was the central figure in Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee
  • Graduated the first African-American psychiatrist in the U.S., Solomon Carter Fuller (MED’1897)
  • Was the first medical school in the nation to partner with historically black colleges to encourage diversity in the medical field, establishing the Early Medical School Selection Program for minority students in 1970
  • Was among the first schools in the country to offer a combined BA-MD degree
  • Established the first combined cancer research and teaching laboratory in the U.S.
  • Created the country’s first section of gastroenterology in 1942
  • Conducted the first studies on the use of penicillin in civilians with infectious diseases, in 1944

BUSM by the numbers

  • 1,635 students
  • 1,159 faculty members
  • 7,733 alumni
  • 8 pathways to the medical degree
  • 12 core research facilities
  • 14 centers of excellence
  • 20 research centers and institutes
  • 25 departments in basic and clinical sciences
  • 640 funded research programs
  • 6,200 electronic library resources and bibliographic databases
  • more than 75 applicants for every seat in the entering class