Community impact

Community service is the very marrow of the Wayne State University School of Medicine, and has been since its founding in 1868. Students choose WSU because they want more than a medical education; they have a desire to dig into the community and help its people, even before receiving their medical degrees.

Our students continuously recognize community and world needs and devise methods to address those needs, from our Street Medicine Detroit group, which sees medical students provide care for the homeless on the streets of Detroit, to creating the annual World AIDS Day Detroit program to spotlight the need for education and testing for a vulnerable population. WSU physicians-in-training are committed to educating community members about health safety and response solutions through initiatives such as the First Aid First video series, a collaboration between students and the Detroit Medical Center (DMC) emergency medicine physicians to help broader populations learn about in-home solutions that could save lives.

Impact in Detroit and beyond


Service to Detroit's residents is woven into every facet of Wayne State University's medical education. Its award-winning community engagement and service learning-focused curriculum is unparalleled in the United States in size, opportunity and scope. More than 500 students annually serve at more than 70 clinical sites and nearly 100 community-based mentoring and outreach locations, and participate in a growing number of public health policy and advocacy opportunities. Year 1 and 2 students volunteer more than 34,000 hours of community service annually. 


Wayne State's location provides unparalleled access to diverse populations and exposure to Detroit's unique health challenges, along with unmatched collaborative opportunities with leading health care systems, organizations and experts. Students and faculty work on interdisciplinary teams in myriad settings to investigate and develop techniques, technologies and processes that better serve residents. In 2016, School of Medicine clinical research awards totaled more than $176 million.


Community partnerships guide, support and strengthen Wayne State University and Detroit. The Center for Translational Science and Clinical Research Innovation — a hub of campuswide clinical research — works with community advisory boards to determine the direction of clinical research, ensuring that studies and discoveries are applicable and available to community members. 

Pipeline and continuing education programs

Wayne State University and its School of Medicine continue to build a diverse health care workforce with a passion for community engagement through K-12, medical education and continuing medical education pipeline programs. Programs and initiatives such as Reach Out to Youth, C2 Pipeline and the Michigan Area Health Education Center open doors for diverse populations, directly impact communities and improve access to health care.

Uncompensated care

Our faculty physicians and practice groups are committed to delivering compassionate care to the underserved, underinsured and uninsured in our communities.



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