Enrollment Management in Undergraduate Medical School Admissions: A Complementary Framework to Holistic Review for Increasing Diversity in Medicine

Academic Article


  • Medical schools implemented holistic review more than a decade ago, which led to more deliberate consideration and inclusion of applicants historically underrepresented in medicine. This article presents a theory of holistic enrollment management that unites holistic review with enrollment management principles. This theory contextualizes medical school admissions as a complex marketplace with multifaceted, competing forces. Applying an enrollment management framework of mission, market, means, and metrics can improve the capacity of a medical school to efficiently advance its mission over time. Medical schools employing a clear, compelling, and focused mission to direct all aspects of the medical education enterprise can more effectively attract applicants who are better prepared to enact that mission throughout their careers. Medical schools share a marketplace and collectively compete to identify, attract, admit, and matriculate the most mission-aligned student body within the pool of applicants they share. Institutions that deliberately mobilize resources within this dynamic marketplace will engage, admit, and matriculate the most suiting applicants and attract even more mission-aligned matriculants over time. Widespread adoption of this holistic framework of enrollment management may enhance the capacity of the medical education system to better capitalize on the existing diversity in the national pool of applicants, encourage more underrepresented applicants to apply in the future, admit and matriculate a more diverse national student body, and ultimately better prepare new physicians to meet the increasingly diverse health care needs of the nation.
  • Published In

  • Academic Medicine  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Nakae S; Porfeli EJ; Davis D; Grabowski CJ; Harrison LE; Amiri L; Ross W
  • Start Page

  • 501
  • End Page

  • 506