Key Initiatives

Underrepresented in Medicine (URM) Initiative

The STFM URM Initiative

The STFM Underrepresented in Medicine (URM) Initiative, supported by the STFM Foundation, initiated a series of projects to:

  • Increase the percentage of URM family medicine faculty, and
  • Increase the number of solutions-focused, adaptable URM leaders within and across our healthcare system

The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) definition of underrepresented in medicine is:

"Underrepresented in medicine means those racial and ethnic populations that are underrepresented in the medical profession relative to their numbers in the general population."1

A diverse workforce of family medicine physicians and faculty is required to support the future of health care and the needs of a diverse patient population. URM faculty members collectively make up only 9.4% of academic medicine while representing almost 33% of the national population.2,3 In recognition of this, the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine (STFM) has committed to developing strategies and providing resources to increase the number of underrepresented in medicine (URM) family medicine educators. 

Oversight Committee & Work Groups

An interprofessional URM Oversight Committee, chaired by Edgar Figueroa, MD, MPH, guided the process. Four Work Groups led the development of strategies and measures for their Focus Areas.

URM Initiative Areas of Focus


  • Create opportunities for developing meaningful relationships that lead to career advancement and leadership 
  • Develop mentors who have the skills to help URM students, residents, and faculty improve resiliency, satisfaction, and retention


  • Increase the percentage of URM family medicine faculty in leadership positions 
  • Raise awareness of the structural barriers to URM achievement

URM Faculty Pipeline

  • Increase the percentage of URM students and URM family medicine residents with an interest in teaching
  • Increase the percentage of URM family medicine faculty
  • Increase the percentage of URM community preceptors who receive resources to improve their teaching skills


  • Increase the percentage of URM students, residents, and faculty who have the skills to produce scholarly research
  1. AAMC. The status of the new AAMC definition of "underrepresented in medicine" following the Supreme Court's decision in Grutter. 2004; Accessed January 31, 2014.
  2. Quick Facts United States. 2018; Accessed September 4, 2019.
  3. Diversity of the Physician Workforce: Facts and Figures 2018. 2018; Accessed March 26, 2020.

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