Main Content:

The EM Program is FOR EVERYONE

The Plan

  1. Communicate Our Strengths

  2. Strengthen Our Partnerships

  3. Advance Our Efforts

Important Information:

Paula Davis HeadshotSHRS' Inclusion Initiatives play an important role in the University of Pittsburgh's efforts to promote diversity and inclusion campus-wide. It is an effective means of reaching diverse students to let them know

that their decision to pursue their studies in one of our health care options is a fantastic way of providing high quality, comprehensive care to others and that the door is open for everyone.

It is our pleasure to partner with SHRS programs in recruiting, welcoming, retaining and graduating talented diverse health care professionals for the good of our country's health.

—Paula Davis, associate vice chancellor, Health Sciences Diversity, Equity and Inclusion


Pitt EM Diversity and Inclusion Initiative

The Emergency Medicine (EM) program aims to educate and empower students and faculty to cultivate a diverse profession that integrates patient care with the ethnic and cultural populations they serve by providing high quality and immersive experiences that prepare them to meet future health care challenges.

Our EM program is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion to create a more welcoming, accessible and inclusive school for our students, faculty, staff and friends in the community. We acknowledge that there are systemic problems that require complex solutions and that we must become part of the change, which starts with this diversity and inclusion initiative.

We must be aware of the role we play in the centuries-long systemic oppression of people of color, particularly black and indigenous people who have consistently received poorer quality health care. The goal of this initiative is to help break this cycle by promoting diversity and inclusion at Pitt, highlighting the strengths of our diverse community.

What is it? 

"EM is FOR EVERYONE" aims to continually foster the efforts of the Emergency Medicine program to embrace and represent all people and their wide range of experiences, backgrounds and perspectives.

We want our program to continue to reflect the inherent and equal value of all people and we embrace our role in preparing the next generation of EMT and paramedics to be comprised of and ready to care for people of all abilities, religions, marital statuses, familial statuses, sexes, ages, sexual orientations, veteran statuses, national origins, ancestries, races, ethnicities, genetic information, gender identities and expressions and socioeconomic statuses. 

We hope this initiative will have many positive impacts, especially providing care for disadvantaged and vulnerable populations while supporting all members of the greater Pittsburgh community.

Our Initiative Aligns With:


The Plan:

The Plan Graphic

This three-part plan allows us to share what we are doing and how we plan to continue to disrupt the barriers to:

  • Diversifying the identities among practicing EM professionals.
  • Maintaining and advancing the climate of inclusivity among the students, staff and faculty of our program.
  • Preparing EM professionals to be knowledgeable and incorporate the diversity of all patients of all backgrounds and viewpoints.

1. Communicate Our Strengths

Pitt EM: Who R U?

  • A Diversity, Equity and Inclusion workgroup of faculty and students in the program is leading an initiative to define our commitment and pursue actions to explore various identities and create a welcoming environment with an intent to understand each other and to develop an explicit mission of equity, justice and inclusion of all individuals and thoughts.

  • Our intent is to identify and attend to the gaps in recruitment and admissions that would better enable our programs to recruit a more diverse student body and faculty to meet our mission and the future of the EM program.

Faculty Training

Faculty and Staff Initiatives

  • In addition to existing mandatory DEI training for Pitt faculty and staff, we will implement health care training on implicit bias, social determinants of health and other factors within DEI for all Pitt EM faculty, instructors and staff.
  • We will also implement a plan to hire more BIPOC (black, indigenous and people of color) staff and faculty.
  • We will introduce a minimum of five hours of instruction and discussion about topics such as social determinants of health, black maternal health, HIV/AIDS, transgender care, implicit bias and more for EM juniors taught by a qualified instructor.

Student Organizations

Student Activities 

  • Through EMSA (Emergency Medicine Student Association), there is mentoring between junior and senior EM students and the fostering of greater collaboration and communication between EM students, faculty and staff.
  • We will encourage students and faculty to engage in group discussions to identify and develop diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. The intent of the discussion is to maintain transparent and clear communications with the student body as it relates to their concerns, engage student ideas, foster thought and discussion and collectively accept and address the challenge to lead change.

2. Strengthen Our Partnerships

Enhance Engagement

Enhance Engagement

  • We have implemented and will continue to draw upon the resources of the University to support efforts and events aimed at advancing diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • We encourage a Racial Trauma protocol at the University for students who may be affected by nationwide racial and social-political trauma to allow them to delay classes, assignments, exams, clinical, etc. if needed.

Identify Resources

  • Consistent with the University of Pittsburgh diversity policy, we encourage students, faculty and staff to create a safe, inclusive and affirming environment that allows all students to reach their goals of growth and change.
  • We encourage students, faculty and staff to use University resources to gain knowledge about diversity and inclusion in order to create a supportive environment to maximize their college experience and realize their fullest potential.

3. Advance Our Efforts

Spread the Initiatives

Spread the Initiatives

  • We will leverage EM’s efforts to grow, expand and unify initiatives across all programs at SHRS.
  • Our goal is to spread this initiative across the University and other clinical organizations to promote the quality and safety of health care.
  • We will advance our mission through an increasingly diverse body of students, alumni, faculty and staff supported through a welcoming and inclusive environment for all.

Special thanks to EM students Jack Tocci, Lily Nong and Taylor Smith for their contributions to building this page.