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A university-wide initiative bridging Cornell's New York City and Ithaca campuses

Diversity Center of Excellence


I and my Co-Principal Investigator Monika Stafford, MD are delighted to welcome you to the Weill Cornell Medicine Diversity Center of Excellence of the Cornell Center for Health Equity. The Diversity Center of Excellence’s mission is to enhance diversity in medicine and health care and to promote health equity through research, education, and advocacy, all in partnership with community.

I am a native New Yorker and decided that I wanted to be a doctor when I was fourteen years old. I am now a primary care doctor and take care of patients and teach as part of Cornell’s faculty. I have had the privilege of taking care of wonderful patients who have taught me so much.

I work with many collaborators to increase the diversity of the health care workforce, so that it  can address the needs of an increasingly diverse nation. Low income and minority people in our country are more likely to be sick and to die young, and we must work to change that. This is a challenging time for our country and for the world, as we confront important decisions about health care delivery, gun violence, education, climate change, voting rights, economic rights, and the rights of immigrants, refugees, and minority communities. I am convinced that together we can make a difference—and that the keys are education and empowerment—especially of young people and of communities. 

We are lucky to live in New York City, the most diverse city in the world, which has welcomed migrants from all over the country, and immigrants from every country of the world, for hundreds of years. New York City has been at the center of many key social movements, and cultural and political achievements. Countless innovators and leaders started out here. Weill Cornell and New York Presbyterian have also fostered the development of wonderful physicians, scientists, and other health and science professionals.

We invite you to explore Weill Cornell’s medical and graduate schools, residency and fellowship programs, health care facilities, and our Diversity Center of Excellence and other diversity, educational and community programs.

Susana Morales, MD

Co-Associate Director, Cornell Center for Health Equity
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine, General Internal Medicine
Vice Chair of Diversity, Weill Department of Medicine

Monika M. Safford, MD

Co-Director, Cornell Center for Health Equity
John J. Kuiper Professor of Medicine
Chief, Division of General Internal Medicine

Daisy Torres-Baez, MS

Diversity Programs Coordinator, Weill Cornell Medicine

Benedict Harvey, BS

Diversity Programs Specialist, Weill Cornell Medicine

About Us

The Weill Cornell Medicine Diversity Center of Excellence of the Cornell Center for Health Equity was established in 2018 with a grant awarded by the Health Resources and Services Administration of the United State Department of Health and Human Services.

For any questions, please email Benedict Harvey


Pipeline:  expanded programs to enhance the diversity of the healthcare workforce

Mentoring: support and mentoring for URM medical students, residents, fellows,  and faculty

Health Equity Education: expanded cultural competence and health disparities education

Health Equity Research Training: for medical students through the Health Equity Area of Concentration, mentoring of resident health equity research projects,  and a Health Equity research fellowship

Health Equity Related Faculty Development: Scholars in Health Equity Program

Expanded Community Based Primary Care Training:

Community Partnerships:

Generate New Knowledge:  through our innovative programs, both in the peer-reviewed literature to share our insights with other academic centers and directly for the benefit of URM and other disadvantaged community members through a novel patient education platform.


The Diversity Center of Excellence co-sponsored a Public Charge Teach-In event on December 3, 2018 organized by Dr. Amanda Ramsdell, on a proposed regulation that would limit immigrant access to medical care. Invited advocates, Claudia Calhoon from New York Immigration Coalition, and physician activist, Dr. Chanelle Diaz spoke about public charge and immigration and health. Approximately 30 members of our WCM community attended.

Events and Updates

The Diversity Center of Excellence hosts year-round events in the New York City area for the Weill Cornell Medicine community and undergraduate students interested in pursuing degrees in medicine. A list of upcoming and past events can be found in the News & Events tab.


ACCESS Summer Internship Program: A program designed for undergraduate students to enhance their understanding of modern biology and medical research.

Travelers Summer Research Fellowship Program: The program is designed to give 25 premedical students deeper insights into the field of medicine, including issues that greatly affect the health of traditionally underserved groups.

Meet some of our faculty:

We Are Weill Cornell Medicine | Dr. Babacar Cisse

We Are Weill Cornell Medicine | Dr. Fernando Martinez

We Are Weill Cornell Medicine | Dr. Tanaka Dune

We Are Weill Cornell Medicine | Dr. Carl Crawford

Dare to Dream: Supporting Medical Education through Scholarships

Biography for Dr. Elaine Barfield

The Black and Latino Men in Medicine (BLMiM)

The Black and Latino Men in Medicine Initiative (BLMiM) was established in 2016 by Dr. Maurice Hinson, NYPH/Cornell Internal Medicine PGY3, and former Co-Chair of the Minority House Staff Committee.  Its purpose is to create a network among Black and Latino male faculty, trainees, and students at WCM and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. BLMiM fosters the advancement of its member’s careers while also enhancing the pipeline for future leaders in healthcare, medicine and science. For questions, please contact:

Make a Gift

The vision of the Cornell Center for Health Equity is to nurture durable academic-community partnerships to inform our research agenda, integrate community perspectives into our research, and develop an infrastructure to disseminate and implement the results of our work with the overarching goal of achieving health equity locally, regionally, and nationally.

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