Mission and vision

Mission Statement
Meharry Medical College is an academic health sciences center that exists to improve the health and health care of minority and underserved communities by offering excellent education and training programs in the health sciences. True to its heritage, Meharry places special emphasis on providing opportunities for people of color, individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, and others regardless of race or ethnicity; delivering high quality health services; and conducting research that fosters the elimination of health disparities.

Vision Statement
To enhance our national reputation and expand our global reach as a quality-driven academic health center noted for its:

  • Leadership in diversifying the nation's health professions work force;
  • Highly effective and innovative educational and training programs;
  • Enlightened health policy development and culturally-sensitive, evidence-based health services; and
  • Preeminence in focused research that leads to the elimination of health disparities.

Core Values

  • Excellence: consistently achieving outstanding levels of performance while upholding the highest standards of ethical behavior, intellectual honesty, and professional conduct.
  • Service: maintaining a nurturing and service-oriented environment that exceeds expectations and treats all people with compassion, dignity, and respect.
  • Accountability: accepting individual and collective responsibility for preserving and effectively managing the resources of the College.
  • Teamwork: encouraging, supporting and valuing the collaborative efforts of faculty, staff, and students to advance the quality of education, research, and patient care.
  • Innovation: promoting creativity and the development of ideas that stimulate improvements in our intellectual and operational endeavors.
  • Diversity: fostering ethnic, intellectual, social, and cultural diversity.
  • Community-focused: demonstrating our concern for the health care needs of underserved communities and advocating for local, state, and national health and public policies directed at improving the status of health of all individuals.

Brief History
Meharry Medical College was founded in 1876 by Samuel Meharry and his four brothers in response to an Act of Kindness he had received on a Kentucky road one rainy night—a chance meeting now known as The Salt Wagon Story. In 1886, Dr. George Whipple Hubbard founded a department that would "provide the Colored people of the South with an opportunity for thoroughly preparing themselves for the practice of dentistry," and Meharry's dental program opened its doors to nine students, three of whom were physicians. The School of Graduate Studies and Research at Meharry Medical College began in 1938 as a series of short courses in the basic and clinical sciences; in 1947, a Master of Science Degree program was implemented as the first graduate degree, a Ph.D. program was established in 1972, and an M.D./Ph.D. program in 1982.

Today, Meharry receives over 5,000 applications for admission to the M.D., D.D.S., M.S.P.H., and Ph.D. programs, providing opportunities for people of color, individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, and others, regardless of race or ethnicity, to receive excellent education and training in the health sciences and conduct research that fosters the elimination of health disparities. Click here for a more detailed history of Meharry Medical College.