Diversity at ATSU

Diversity at ATSU

A.T. Still University of Health Sciences is deeply committed to an educational and collaborative environment embracing cultural proficiency. Students striving to become the best healthcare professionals possible must understand and embrace society’s diversity. This is also true for ATSU’s faculty and staff.

Andrew Taylor Still, MD, DO, founder of osteopathic medicine and ATSU, was a licensed physician and surgeon, healthcare innovator, abolitionist, civil war hospital steward, and suffragist who created opportunities for women in medicine as early as the 1890s.

Today, ATSU supports students who learn and serve in diverse, underserved, urban, and rural communities across America. ATSU’s alumni also practice, work, and volunteer across the world. Many hold leadership positions dedicated to bringing quality healthcare to those in greatest need.

Thank you for taking a few moments to explore ATSU’s commitment to cultural proficiency. We invite you to join us on our journey by exploring out website and following us on social media.






Yours in service,
Craig M. Phelps, DO, ‘84

  • Director's message +

    • Clinton Normore, director of diversityA.T. Still University has positioned diversity at the forefront of the strategic planning process. This only reinforces the historic value the University has for this aspect of our culture. The standard to be a preeminent university for health profession education isn’t a mere statement. ATSU lives these ideals for the sake of osteopathy and the evolution of the health professions. As the birthplace for osteopathic education, ATSU is fully invested in that legacy.

      The first overarching tenet of osteopathy is the unity of body, mind and spirit. By understanding the precision by which the human body functions, one can appreciate the value of utilizing this amazing instrument to promote healing. Diversity education at ATSU also seeks to embody this tenet to induce inclusion at every level. Our mission is the spirit through which our body operates. Our collective minds deliver on innovation, collaboration and appreciation for differences. By valuing the difference that these differences make, we become increasingly reflective of the communities we serve. Our mission is centered on service. By serving our community partners, students, faculty, staff and external partners, we are moving from cultural competence to a culturally proficient organization.

      The strength of our progression towards cultural proficiency is our ability to be reflective and to always aspire to move beyond where we are. This measure of excellence compels us to be a work in progress at all times - constantly moving forward. ATSU is a beacon for caring people committed to service, committed to the body as an instrument of healing and committed to inclusivity in its most sincere sense.

      Finally, ATSU believes excellence requires understanding, affirming and valuing human difference.

      I look forward to working on creating an all-inclusive and diverse community at A.T. Still University.

      Clinton J. Normore
      Director of Diversity

  • Objective +

    • A.T. Still University strives to create a culturally rich community which embraces all forms of differences, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, origin of birth, age, religious beliefs, political beliefs, socio-economic status, physical characteristics, military service, title, academic background, and professional experiences. Inherent in ATSU’s mission is the belief excellence is inclusive—academic and intellectual, physical and physiological; cultural and social, spiritual and moral.

      We believe these attributes are expressed in our acceptance of difference, and our collective appreciation provided by these differences guides us in the development of a campus community reflective of the global community of which we are all a part.

      An authentic understanding and appreciation of difference are foundational to reaching cultural proficiency, which, at its core, is based upon the value each human being brings to our society and each person’s access and opportunities to contribute to our University’s cultural proficiency. The strength of our campus community as well as the potential of the global community is realized through this same understanding, affirmation, and value of human difference.

  • Student insights +

    • During high school I had dreams of becoming a physician, however, I did not know what that looked like in reality. It was not until I was deployed to combat in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom that I revisited my earlier feelings of becoming a physician. I had a powerful experience with a little girl and her family at a hospital in Baghdad, which motivated me to pursue medicine again. I knew that I wanted to be in a position to be able to help others from a medical perspective.

      There is a sense of community at ATSU that instantly drew me in and continues to draw me. ATSU reached out to me with an opportunity to join them and I’ve always believed in a reciprocal relationship. I plan to practice medicine as long as I can and to hopefully one day return to ATSU-KCOM in some capacity to further the mission of the university.

      John R. Thurman, Jr., DO, ‘12

      Jessica Markbreiter, ATSU athletic training student

      After learning more about ATSU’s post-professional Athletic Training program and patient-centered approach to healthcare, I knew ATSU would be the right fit for me. One thing I knew that would set me apart from other students who were entering the program was my physical stature. I have Achondroplasia Dwarfism, which is a genetic mutation that results in shorter limbs and standing height at four feet tall.

      Instead of identifying my difference as a crutch in my life, I use it to set myself apart and make it a unique characteristic about myself. I am always eager to educate others about dwarfism and to answer questions they may have.

      I am so grateful that my difference has been embraced at ATSU. The support I have received from everyone at ATSU is something I would have never imagined. ATSU isn’t just my school; it has now become my home away from home.

      Jessica, athletic training student

      Alexa Arastoo, osteopathic medicine studentt During my time in college, I became passionate about social and economic disparities. I believe good health is the biggest factors affecting quality of life, and I was inspired to pursue a career in medicine to do my part in alleviating inequities. When I first applied to schools, KCOM jumped out at me as an option that would coalesce with my goals.

      During my interview, I immediately felt validated and welcomed. Learning about how the school could be academically rigorous, innovative and also focused on community and “whole person” healthcare solidified my decision. I plan on becoming a primary care physician with a goal of working in areas that are currently under served.

      Alexa Arastoo, osteopathic medicine student

      Bruce Wallace, osteopathic medicine student
      I grew up in a neighborhood where access to quality healthcare was a major issue. I soon realized the impact that this had not only on the physical, but the mental and emotional well-being of people as well. I decided to pursue a career in medicine because I wanted to have the tools to help people achieve a better life.

      I chose to attend ATSU, because of the welcoming and supportive environment. From the first day of classes, I felt my classmates have gone above and beyond to help me achieve my goals.

      Bruce Wallace, osteopathic medicine student

  • Calendar +

  • Programs +

    • Cultural Proficiency in Healthcare

      Cultural proficiency in healthcare is a way of being and serving that enables one to effectively respond in a variety of cultural settings to the issues caused by diversity. In a word, diversity means “differences” and one cannot truly value differences if one is unwilling to appreciate the myriad of difference in our society and also work to be inclusive at every opportunity. A culturally proficient organization interacts effectively with its employees, its clients, and its community. Culturally proficient people may not know all there is to know about others who are different from them, but they know how to take advantage of teachable moments, how to ask questions without offending, and how to create an environment that is welcoming to diversity and to changes.

      SafeZone for All

      SafeZone for All program is to create beacons, SafeZone for All allies, whose roles are to be visible ambassadors, so that we ensure the campus climate feels safe, receptive, and accepting to community members regardless of any human condition, characteristic, or circumstance that they may have. Read more about SafeZone for All

      Prep for Success Intensive

      Prep for Success Intensive (PSI) is an intensive week-long colloquium where six pre-medical and six pre-dental students will collaborate under expert facilitation with the primary goal of MCAT and DAT success. This is where you learn how to test smarter and problem solve faster.

      The PSI camp will be held in Kirksville, Mo. on the Truman State University, and A.T. Still University campuses. Learning will be facilitated by university science faculty, and students will be mentored by medical and dental student from A.T. Still University, who underwent the same pressure and succeeded. Learn more about the PSI program

  • Committees +

    • Advisory Council On Diversity (ACOD)

      The mission of the Advisory Council On Diversity (ACOD) is to work to cultivate a culturally proficient community, which embraces all forms of difference and perpetuates the University’s mission to enrich learning experiences of students, faculty, and staff in support of serving the underserved.

      ATSU Diversity Enrichment Committee (Missouri campus)

      The ATSU Diversity Enrichment Committee (Missouri campus) mission is to enrich the culture of acceptance and respect of diversity in all its forms. The committee, created of students, faculty and staff, will work together to promote policies and programs that recognize and celebrate diversity across the community.

      Cultural Competence In Education Committee (CCEC)

      The mission of the CCEC is to promote the integration of cultural content in education, support a safe environment, and enhance the understanding of the way culture impacts holistic wellness.

      Diversity Enrichment Committee (DEC)

      School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (SOMA) Diversity Committee

  • Demographics +

    • ATSU Schools

      • Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCOM)
      • School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (SOMA)
      • Arizona School of Health Sciences (ASHS)
      • College of Graduate Health Studies (CGHS)
      • Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health (ASDOH)
      • Missouri School of Dentistry & Oral Health (MOSDOH)

      Campus Information

      Location Population Campus Size
      Kirksville, Mo. 17,505 150 acres
      Mesa, Ariz. 439,041 59 acres

      Enrollment DATA (Fall 2013)

      ATSU School Students Enrolled
      KCOM 712
      SOMA 431
      CGHS 420
      ASHS 1,396
      ASDOH 313
      MOSDOH 42
      Total 3,314

      International Enrollment

      Approximately 100 non-resident students from more than 9 countries

      Enrollment Status

      Percentage of Enrolled
      Full-Time 66%
      Full-Time 34%
      Male 45%
      Female 55%


      % of FT enrollment
      Non-Resident Alien 0.002%
      Hispanic/Latino 5%
      American Indian or Alaska Native 1%
      Asian 15%
      Black or African American 5%
      Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.003%
      White 66%
      Two or More Races 3%
      Race/Ethnicity Unknown 5%

      Degrees Granted (2013)

      Total Degrees Issued
      Doctoral 755
      Master’s 384
      Certificates 68

      Full-Time Employees (Benefit-Eligible)


      Student/Faculty Ratio


      Male/Female Student Ratio


      Number of Student Organizations

      Approximately 86

      GPA of Incoming Students (Average)

      Degree Program Average GPA
      KCOM DO 3.56 cumulative, 3.49 science
      KCOM Biomedical Sciences 3.26 cumulative, 3.07 science
      SOMA DO 3.42 cumulative, 3.32 science
      ASHS Residential 3.3 cumulative, 3.1 science
      ASDOH DMD 3.34 cumulative, 3.22 science
      MOSDOH 3.4 overall, 3.26 science

      MCAT Scores of Incoming Students (Average)

      School Average Score
      KCOM 27
      SOMA 27

      Percentage of Full-Time Students Awarded University Scholarships and/or Federal Financial Aid


      DAT Scores of Incoming Students (Average)

      School Average Score
      ASDOH 18.63
      MOSDOH 18.74

      Graduation Rates (Average)

      Degree Program Average Graduation Rate
      KCOM Doctor of Osteopathy 99%
      KCOM Biomedical Sciences 64%
      ASHS Residential 96%
      ASHS Online 88%
      CGHS 48%
      ASDOH 98%
      SOMA 94%
      MOSDOH -

      Number of Degree Programs (Fall 2013)

      Total Degree Programs
      Doctoral 12
      Master’s 9
      Certificates 9

      Budget (Fiscal Year 2011-12)

      $79 million

  • Scholarships +

    • A.T. Still University is developing a list of scholarships designed to afford you the opportunity to capitalize on the University’s unique mission of service and leadership in whole person healthcare. These scholarships vary in design but have a common purpose: to reduce the most significant barrier to healthcare education – cost.

      By creating financial access through a myriad of new scholarship programs, ATSU will continue to lead the way in educating qualified students who are committed to the ATSU mission of providing healthcare to underserved areas.

      Internal Scholarships

      Graduate Health Professions Scholarship - is designed to accentuate the university’s unique mission of service and leadership in whole person healthcare. This scholarship is a targeted approach to attract and educate students whose life contributions and experiences are consistent with ATSU’s mission to serve in underserved areas. Read more about the Graduate Health Professional Scholarship requirements (pdf).

      External Scholarships

      We encourage all students to seek scholarships offered through various agencies and organizations to fund your educations. Our office will post external scholarships as they become available. Eligibility requirements and application deadlines may change without our knowledge.

  • Employment +

    • ATSU is a culturally rich community that prepares innovative and compassionate healthcare professionals for service in underserved areas. As an expanding university, we offer a wide range of rewarding and challenging job opportunities that support our prestigious academic environment.

      If you want to be part of our dynamic, diverse and collaborative environment, we encourage you to apply for one of our open positions.

  • Student organizations +

    • A.T. Still University offers a variety of involvement opportunities for our students to connect with smaller social groups. A list of diverse, student groups are provided below. Students may also develop new student groups as the need arises for campus diversity and inclusivity. Questions about existing groups or how to start a new group can email Student Life at studentlife@atsu.edu.

      Cultural organizations Campus location
      Asian Pacific American Medical Students Association Arizona
      Hispanic Medical Association asdohhsda@atsu.edu Arizona
      Medical Spanish Club Missouri
      Project:Pueblo Arizona
      Society of American Indian Dentist Arizona
      Religious/Spiritual organizations Campus location
      Alpha Omega aoazasdoh@gmail.com Arizona
      Christian Healthcare Fellowship christianhealthcarefellowship@atsu.edu Arizona
      Christian Medical and Dental Association (CMDA) Missouri
      Latter-Day Saints Student Association (LDSSA) Missouri
      Secular Student Interest Group Missouri
      Sexuality/Gender organizations Campus location
      American Association of Women Dentists asdohaawd@atsu.edu Arizona
      Association of Women’s Surgeons Arizona
      Gay-Straight Alliance Missouri
      Medical Students For Choice Arizona
      National Osteopathic Women Physicians’ Association (NOWPA) Missouri

  • Research +

    • Research is the backbone of the academic process. Diversity has a widely recognized relationship to the vestiges of the healing process. Therefore research on healthcare disparities related to diversity is necessary in a health professions education environment. This section is devoted to internal research by our students, faculty and staff on diversity related topics pertaining to healthcare disparities.

      Lapinski, J., & P. Sexton. Still in the closet: the invisible minority in medical education. BMC Medical Education 2014, 14:171 http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6920/14/171
      Summary: To investigate the relationship between sexual orientation and gender identity in regard to levels of depression; levels of perceived social support; comfort with disclosure of orientation; and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) campus climate.

  • Academic programs +

    • The mission that drives ATSU includes a specific focus on diversity and underserved populations. The University is mindful of these focus areas, from the student recruitment process through students’ clinical training locations and the populations they serve. With more than 25 programs and growing, ATSU is dedicated to preparing students to become leaders in the healthcare industry. Students can choose from master’s degrees across allied health disciplines; doctorates in athletic training, audiology, health administration, health education, health sciences, occupational therapy, and physical therapy; the doctor of dental medicine; and the doctor of osteopathic medicine.

      Learn more about our academic programs.


Community Health Center

Waianae, Hawaii

As a leading provider of quality healthcare for area residents, Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center also provides community employment and health education. More than 80% of the staff are local residents, and many were trained at the affiliated Waianae Health Academy. Find out more.


From public health centers located in communities where services are needed most, to research and other leading edge whole person healthcare initiatives, you can create your own legacy by contributing to the specific cause that moves you most. Find out more.


When you give to A.T. Still University, you're not only supporting whole person healthcare education, you're also helping deliver it to where the care is needed most. Through our legacy program, we send students to underserved communities nationwide and conduct healthcare clinics at the university on occasion. Find out more.


Whole person healthcare takes an integrated approach that addresses body, mind and spirit as one. Students are encouraged to participate in wellness programs and study areas including nutrition and psychology to gain a more comprehensive understanding. Find out more.


Keep up with the latest developments in whole person healthcare at A.T. Still University with our complimentary newsletter and other publications. From scholarly inquiry and research to alumni activities and more. Sign up today.


Let your light shine at A.T. Still University. Combining leading-edge whole person healthcare with a commitment to serving those communities where needs are greatest, we provide students the opportunity to truly excel as doctors, dentists, healthcare providers and healthcare leaders. Apply now; click here.