School of Medicine

Dean: Jack Sobel

The primary mission of the School of Medicine is to improve the overall health of the Michigan community by providing medical and biotechnical knowledge and trained professionals in medical fields.

The school offers educational programs leading to the Doctor of Medicine, Doctor of Philosophy, Master of Science and Master of Public Health degrees. Graduate education in clinical fields, postdoctoral study and continuing medical education programs, as well as a joint M.D.-Ph.D. degree, also are offered. About 300 students are admitted annually to the medical degree program and approximately 400 students are enrolled in doctoral or master's degree study in 19 program areas, including the medical degree/doctoral combined-degree program. More than 900 students are post-graduate trainees as medical residents, post-doctoral fellows, or fellows in 29 clinical research programs. Continuing education programs, seminars and colloquiums serve the faculty and students, as well as professionals throughout the community as a resource for current and ongoing developments in the health sciences. In addition to degree programs, the school offers courses in many basic medical science disciplines appropriate for students in other colleges and schools of Wayne State University. Non-degree enrollment in basic science courses at the graduate level is permitted on a limited basis for qualified students.

Research focusing on human health is the foundation of activities in the School of Medicine. Fundamental and applied research in biomedical sciences, clinical specialties and heath care systems is directed by the faculty. Research programs are supported by more than $140 million annually in research grants, contracts and gifts. Members of the faculty serve on scientific boards, panels, study groups and in professional leadership roles in health care regionally, nationally and internationally. Research facilities are modern, well-equipped and grow continually with the pace of technological advances.

Clinical services provided by the faculty, post-graduates and students are rendered predominantly through the Detroit Medical Center institutions, including five hospitals on the downtown campus, three hospitals outside the campus and in the near suburbs, and many outpatient facilities throughout the greater Detroit area. The school also is affiliated with 14 other hospitals throughout the metropolitan area for the purpose of conducting undergraduate and graduate medical education.

The school's mission includes a responsibility to the population of the Detroit metropolitan region as a whole, both as an educational institution and as a supplier of physicians who are highly skilled providers of health care to staff other institutions and to practice in the community. The school is committed to its educational and health care delivery activities within the context of medical education as a national activity, to which each institution contributes responsibly according to its abilities and resources.

History of the School

The Wayne State University School of Medicine has been operating and granting degrees as a school of medicine since 1868. Originally named the Detroit Medical College, it was founded by Dr. Theodore A. McGraw, a native of Detroit who returned to the city in 1865 after serving for two years in the United States Army as a contract surgeon.

In 1879, a second medical college, the Michigan College of Medicine, opened in Detroit. The two colleges soon united to become the Detroit College of Medicine. In 1919, the Detroit College of Medicine and Surgery, as it was then known, became an official part of the Detroit Board of Education and thus an important unit in the rapidly developing Colleges of the City of Detroit. In 1933, the name of the Colleges of the City of Detroit changed to Wayne University in honor of American Revolutionary War hero Gen. Anthony Wayne. Wayne University became a state institution in 1956.


Programs in the Wayne State University School of Medicine are accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, representing the American Medical Association and the Association of American Medical Colleges (the medical doctor program); the Liaison Committee of Graduate Medical Education of the Accrediting Council for Graduate Medical Education and various Residency Review Committees (residency programs); and the Accreditation Council of Continuing Medical Education (Continuing Medical Education).

Graduate Degrees and Certificates

There are two major types of academic programs in the School of Medicine, those leading to the M.D. degree and postgraduate medical education; and those programs in the basic medical sciences which offer Master of Science or Doctor of Philosophy degrees.

Shiffman Medical Library and Learning Resources Centers

Director: Sandra I. Martin
Librarians: Katherine Akers, LaVentra Ellis-Danquah, Wendy Gang Wu
Library services are provided to graduate students through a variety of programs held at the newly renovated Shiffman Medical Library in the Richard J. Mazurek Medical Education Commons. Resources and services are also available online including over 4700 online journals in the health sciences, a growing number of e-books. Services include reference support and the delivery of documents to the student's desktop. Orientation programs, small group workshops and individualized instruction featuring the latest information resources are available to graduate students throughout their program and may be requested via email. Key services in support of graduate education include: reference service, remote and on-site electronic access to the major biomedical databases including PubMed, Scopus, Science Citation Index, the National Center for Biotechnology Information, Dissertation Abstracts with full text, and an array of electronic tools for effective information management. Materials not available in the WSU Libraries are obtained for graduate students free of charge. Access to the libraries of the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and various specialized collections is also available to graduate students.

The library's goal is to support each graduate student's individualized needs through graduation and for self-directed, life-long learning. Librarians are available for consultation, for help in identifying useful literature and using the latest file management programs to organize the references at any point during their program. Librarians can also provide students with tips for time-saving ways to use in preparing manuscripts. In addition the library has access to a number of databases to assist students in acquiring external funding. The library staff is committed to acquiring the materials needed to support the array of graduate programs offered by the affiliated colleges. Students are encouraged to identify their needs regularly.

A computer lab is available in the library for graduate students use. The lab contains ten workstations, one adaptive workstation, a standalone scanner, and a fully wired teacher's lectern.

Please contact the library for more information about current and planned services. The staff of the Shiffman Library is committed to enabling transparent discovery and access to the best possible resources that expeditiously and effectively meet student and faculty needs.

Office of Student Affairs

Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and Career Development: Lisa MacLean, M.D.
The Office of Student Affairs is under the supervision of an assistant dean. Services include: career and supportive counseling; crisis intervention; liaison for referrals; academic advising; guidance for residency application; support for student government and organization activities as well as oversight of Special Events, the Health and Wellness Program and the Medical Student Faculty Mentoring Program. The staff is committed to assisting students in every way possible as the students work toward M.D. degrees. These programs are part of the School’s commitment to provide each matriculant with support services so that the rigorous educational program can be presented within as comfortable an environment as possible.

Counseling: Appointments for confidential supportive and career counseling can be arranged through the Office of Student Affairs.

Mentoring: Faculty mentors are provided through the Office of Student Affairs for the purpose of giving guidance and support to the medical students throughout their medical school careers.

Health and Wellness: Health and Wellness Program was developed so that each student optimizes healthy coping strategies, finds good balance and achieves academic success throughout medical school.

Development Office

Office: 540 E. Canfield, 1369 Scott Hall; Detroit, MI 48201
Associate Vice President: Stephen Henrie, CFRE

This Office maintains a staff to support all aspects of fund raising from private sources. It is dedicated to helping meet current challenges and prepare for future opportunities in keeping with the spirit and traditions established by the School’s founders.

The Development Office’s fund-raising program is based on the premise that the personal and financial involvement of its alumni and friends enhance the quality and reputation of this School. Only through a broad base of volunteer assistance can the School of Medicine secure enough private gifts to help supplement State assistance, tuition, and other means of support essential to providing an outstanding program of education and research.

Office of Alumni Affairs

Office: 540 E. Canfield, 1369 Scott Hall, Detroit, MI 48201
Associate Director of Alumni Affairs: Dian Puhl

The purpose of the Office of Alumni Affairs is to advance the School of Medicine's (SOM) mission by promoting partnerships of alumni and the School of Medicine. This is done by administrating the SOM Alumni Association's events and activities including Alumni Annual Fund which supports SOM student organizations and projects; developing programming that brings alumni together; collaborating internally with SOM offices such as Admissions and Student Affairs to connect alumni with medical students; and by identifying, training and appreciating alumni volunteers who use their experiences and leadership skills in ways that benefit the School.

Department of Public Affairs

Office: 540 E. Canfield, 1320 Scott Hall, Detroit, MI 48201

This department is responsible for the communications and public relations programs for the school. The office publishes alumni and faculty newsletters and a variety of collateral publications. In addition, the department conducts media relations and promotional activities and serves as an information resource regarding faculty, student and alumni achievement related to research, clinical care, and medical education.