Mission Statement

The Department of Internal Medicine is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion by fostering a culture that values differences and similarities. We strive to embrace diversity in all of its forms to provide an environment where everyone can reach their full potential, while delivering the highest quality in patient care, biomedical research and training of health professionals.

Our Leaders


Jennifer Sipos, MD

  • Vice Chair for Diversity and Inclusion, Department of Internal Medicine

Sakima Smith, MD, MPH

  • Vice Chair for Diversity and Inclusion, Department of Internal Medicine


JAMA Open Study Evaluates Diversity in Academic Leadership
Diversity in academic leadership is critical in fostering innovative solutions to dynamic challenges in medicine and meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse workforce.1 Prior studies2 have documented underrepresentation of some racial and ethnic groups in academia and in the departmental chair position; however, it is unknown whether these disparities persist currently and whether they are reflected similarly within individual specialties. Consequently, this study evaluates equitable racial and ethnic diversity among departmental chairs and evaluates the racial/ethnic composition of faculty in academia, which is the pipeline for medical leadership. Daniel Addison, MD, is a co-author of this paper. Read more

Ohio State Cardiologist Among Those Highlighting Disparities in Heart Attack Outcomes
recent study confirms that Black people from under-resourced neighborhoods are significantly more likely to die within five years of surviving a heart attack than Black people from wealthier neighborhoods and white people of all socioeconomic backgrounds. A recent Healthline article reviews the research, discusses ways clinicians can help improve outcomes and includes comments from Ohio State’s Sakima Smith, MD, MPH, a heart failure transplant cardiologist, associate professor of Internal Medicine and associate vice chair of Diversity and Inclusion. 

Wexner Medical Center ranked on “America’s Best Employers for Diversity” list
The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center has been recognized on Forbes’ list of “America’s Best Employers for Diversity.” We are ranked #12 among hospitals on the national list and #2 among hospitals in Ohio. This recognition highlights the medical center’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and validates our progress in attracting, developing and retaining a diverse and inclusive team. Thank you to all who have played a role in making this possible.

STAT: After 40 years, medical schools are admitting fewer Black male or Native American students
While Black male medical students accounted for 3.1% of the national medical student body in 1978, in 2019 they accounted for just 2.9%. Without the contribution of historically Black medical schools, just 2.4% would be Black men. The number of Native American students also declined, accounting for just a fraction of 1% of the nation’s roughly 22,000 medical students in 2019. “It is absolutely dismal and appalling and quite frankly unacceptable,” said Dr. Demicha Rankin, an anesthesiologist and associate dean of Admissions for The Ohio State University College of Medicine, where 25% of students come from underrepresented minority groups. Read more

Not Your Model Minority: Asian Students Speak Out – Inspire Podcast

A Guilty Verdict, A Sigh of Relief: College presidents, student leaders, and scholars welcomed the outcome of the trial of Derek Chauvin even as they renewed their resolve to stem persistent racial inequities in higher education.

To Build a Diverse Company for the Long Term, Develop Junior Talent

Upcoming Events

Juneteenth Celebration 

June 17
11:45 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Juneteenth is an important date in celebrating African American freedom. Save the date and plan to attend the upcoming virtual Juneteenth celebration, hosted by the Diversity CouncilDuring the event, you’ll hear from:

  • A drum call featuring local artists
  • Hal Paz, MD, executive vice president and chancellor for Health Affairs, The Ohio State University, chief executive officer, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
  • Leon McDougle, MD, MPH, chief diversity officer, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, associate dean for diversity and inclusion, professor, college of medicine, The Ohio State University
  • Elaine Richardson, PhD, professor, department of teaching and learning, The Ohio State University
  • Hasan Kwame Jeffries, PhD, associate professor, department of history, The Ohio State University

Register here.

Cancer Survivorship in the LGBTQ+ Community: Considerations and Resources
June 17
6-7:30 p.m.
Societal marginalization/ special consideration for LGBTQ+ breast cancer survivors. Register here.

So You Want to Take About Race - Ijeoma Oluo
June 21
Noon - 1 p.m.
Book discussion with moderators Kip Holley and Kendra Hetrick. Register here.

Just Medicine - Dayna Bowen Matthew 
September 21
Noon - 1 p.m.
Book discussion with moderators Kami Dixon-Shambley, MD, and Wanda Dillard. Register here.

Caste - Isabel Wilkerson
December 13
Noon - 1 p.m.
Book discussion with moderators Kyle Strickland and Tanya Matthews. Register here.

Past Events

Clinical Trials and Underrepresented Minorities: Mistrust, Misconceptions, Missed Opportunities and Moving Forward to Enhance Diversity
Recording here


Advisory Council

The Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Council is comprised of faculty members from each clinical division in the department. The council will work with the vice chairs towards enhancing diversity and inclusion efforts in the Department of Internal Medicine.

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