Rebecca Lee Crumpler Scholarship

Join us for the 2023 Rebecca Lee Crumpler, MD, Symposium on February 8, 2023

Click here to make an online gift to the Rebecca Lee Crumpler, MD Scholarship Fund

More Information

In 1864, a 33-year-old woman named Rebecca Davis Lee (Crumpler) became the first Black American woman to earn a degree in medicine. The degree was awarded by the New England Female Medical College, a pioneering institution that a decade later merged with Boston University and formed the core of Boston University’s Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine. She was able to study at the Female Medical College because of a scholarship. Following her graduation, Rebecca worked with the Freedmen’s Bureau in Richmond, VA, created at the end of the Civil War to help recently freed enslaved people gain access to food, housing, and medical services. She returned to practice family medicine in Boston, and later published A Book of Medical Discourses. Although she encountered prejudice and hostility as a Black female doctor, she persisted, and discovered her life’s mission: combating illness in women and children.

In her memory, the Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine has established the Rebecca Lee Crumpler, MD, Endowed Scholarship Fund, which is awarded to students demonstrating financial need, with first preference for Black women and second preference for students from underrepresented communities who are Black or Hispanic/Latinx.

To support the Rebecca Lee Crumpler, MD Endowed Scholarship Fund:

  1. Online: Please go to BU Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine Development Giving Page to donate
  2. By check: Make payable to Trustees of Boston University, and in the memo on your check (or an accompanying note) list “Rebecca Lee Crumpler, MD Scholarship Fund” to ensure your donation is deposited to the correct fund. You can mail the check to the address below:

Boston University Development
Gift Processing
C/O JPMorgan Chase & Co.
PO Box 22605
New York, NY 10087-2605

For any questions about donations, please contact

For more information on this initiative: Rebecca Lee Crumpler Scholarship