Welcome to CDU
Office of Academic Affairs
The goal of the Office of Academic Affairs is to assist faculty and students to achieve their academic objectives and fulfill the university vision of producing leaders who transform the health of diverse and underserved communities.
Brief History of Academic Programs at CDU
CDU is a private, nonprofit, nonsectarian, minority-serving medical and health sciences institution. The University was conceived as a postgraduate medical school during 1963 planning discussions and was chartered in 1966 as a response to chronic poor health status and diminished access to healthcare among the people of South Los Angeles.
CDU, which continues to serve as the only academic health sciences center for the area’s 1.5 million residents, is also the only designated minority-serving health-sciences university in a county of more than 10 million people, 70 percent of whom are from minority communities. Defined as a Minority Serving Institution by the U.S. Office of Civil Rights, the University’s College of Medicine is recognized by the Department of Education under subsection (a), Title III B Section 326, as a Historically Black Graduate Institution. The University is also a charter member of the Hispanic Serving Health Professions Schools, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the health of Hispanic people through research initiatives, training opportunities, and academic development. CDU is the only higher education institution so dually designated in the United States. CDU has also been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) since 1995 and currently offers 20 academic programs organized into two colleges: the College of Science and Health (COSH) and the College of Medicine (COM). COSH offers 17 programs, including undergraduate degree, master of public health degree, continuing education, and certificate of completion programs. COM is composed of three programs: the CDU/UCLA Medical Education, the Master of Science in Clinical Research, and the Continuing Medical Education Programs.
The University has become a dominant force in translational research, focusing on quickly converting research findings into the improved practice of medicine at the community level. In research dollars, CDU ranks in the top 10 percent of more than 3,400 institutions supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is ranked in the top 50 private research universities, as rated by the Center for Measuring University Performance (Top American Research Universities 2007, http://mup.asu.edu/research2007.pdf).
The University’s presence and expertise is also felt internationally. A significant number of programs in the Global Health Institute aid international communities in establishing healthcare programs and systems.
In more than 37 years of enrolling students, the University has made significant contributions to the nation’s health care by graduating more than 550 physicians, 2,100 physician assistants, 2,500 physician specialists, and numerous other health professionals, almost all from diverse communities, and the great majority of whom continue to work with underserved communities many years after graduation. As noted, CDU first received WASC accreditation in 1995.