“Diversity, or the state of being different, isn’t the same as inclusion. One is a description of what is, while the other describes a style of interaction essential to effective teams and organizations.”

– Bill Crawford, PhD, Psychologist

“People from different backgrounds have varying ways of looking at problems, what I call ‘tools.’ The sum of these tools is far more powerful in organizations with diversity than in ones where everyone has gone to the same schools, been trained in the same mold and thinks in almost identical ways.”

– Scott E. Page, Professor of Complex Systems, Political Science and Economics, University of Michigan

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Allyship and Social Justice (IDEAS) at Department of Medicine

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Allyship and Social Justice (IDEAS) at the Department of Medicine, formally know as the Office of Inclusion and Diversity, works to expand the School of Medicine’s mission to enhance inclusion, diversity, and equity along with a commitment to allyship and social justice throughout the department.

IDEAS is charged with making structural, process and programming changes to help welcome, support and promote individuals of all backgrounds, especially those who have been historically under represented in all levels of academic medicine. We find that our differences in thought, lived experiences, physical make-up and social identities make us better problem solvers, more inspiring educators, more innovative researchers and more compassionate physicians.  

Our mission

We want to lead by creating a Department of Medicine where we are all valued; where we attract others to join us in our work; where we are supported to thrive in making our unique contributions; and where our differences are regarded as a strength and an important aspect of our excellence in patient care, education and research. 

We have multiple forums and task forces available to serve the department’s community inclusion and diversity efforts, listed below.

Diversity training

A number of Department of Medicine division members have completed the School of Medicine’s diversity training programs, which progress from versions 1.0 through 4.0. See the attendance breakdown so far:

  • Diversity 1.0: 2,068
  • Diversity 2.0: 674
  • Diversity 3.0: 431
  • Diversity 4.0: 142

Learn more about diversity training »

Forum for LGBTQIA and OUTmed/Allies

OUTmed is a forum for LGBTQIA-identified faculty, staff, trainees and allies. Our activities provide opportunities for networking and mentoring, community engagement, discussion and advocacy relating to LGBTQIA healthcare issues. We are based in the Department of Medicine, but we are open to anyone in the School of Medicine who is interested in our activities, regardless of departmental affiliation.  

Learn more about OUTmed and Allies »


Forum for Women in Medicine (FWIM)

The Forum for Women in Medicine (FWIM) was created in 2014 to support the professional and personal development of the women trainees in the Department of Medicine. FWIM hosts workshops, lectures and networking events throughout the academic year to provide career development guidance, facilitate mentoring opportunities and foster a sense of camaraderie within the women in the training program.

Learn more about FWIM »

Task forces

In November of 2016, department chair, Vicky Fraser, MD, called for the creation of three task forces to identify areas of concern and barriers, which would then recommend innovative solutions to promote  inclusion, diversity, and equity throughout the department.

Learn more about the task forces »


Read more about diversity at Washington University in our Spotlight on IDEAS section »