Duke University School of Medicine 
Facts & Figures 2021

Duke University School of Medicine is one of the nation's leading institutions for medical education, clinical care and biomedical research. Planning for the school began in 1925 when businessman James Buchanan Duke, benefactor of Duke University and The Duke Endowment, bequeathed $4 million to establish the Duke University School of Medicine, the Duke University School of Nursing and Duke University Hospital. Less than five years after the school opened in 1930, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) ranked Duke in the top quarter of medical schools in the country. Now, 90 years later, the School of Medicine comprises more than 2,500 regular rank faculty physicians and researchers and nearly 2,000 health professions and biomedical PhD students. The School of Medicine, Duke University Health System, School of Nursing, and the Private Diagnostic Clinic (PDC) create Duke Health.


Core Values

  • Excellence in education, research and patient care
  • Respect for and inclusion of people from all backgrounds
  • Commitment to service, solving real world problems
  • Sense of urgency in transforming discoveries into improved human health
  • Professionalism and integrity demonstrated in all aspects of performance and effort


Mary E. Klotman, MD, Dean of the School of Medicine, Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs

School Leadership

Duke University School of Medicine is led by Mary E. Klotman, M.D., Dean and Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs. Dean Klotman works with a leadership team comprising 12 vice deans, a strategic planning officer, chief diversity and a communications officer, as well as department chairs and center and institute directors. Associate and assistant deans also assist the dean with the oversight and management of the School of Medicine.



Departments, Centers, Institutes, and Initiatives

The Duke University School of Medicine comprises 24 clinical and basic science departments. The school’s strong emphasis on research to improve clinical outcomes encourages collaborations among faculty members, departments and other schools at the university, and has resulted in the development of numerous centers and institutes.


School of Medicine Historical Milestones: An Interactive Timeline

See full text of the timeline



The School of Medicine consists of more than 2,500 academic and clinical faculty in 38 departments, centers and institutes.Total Regular Rank Faculty 2,571

Faculty Memberships

(Faculty with a primary or secondary appointment in the School of Medicine)

14        American Academy of Arts and Sciences
48        American Association for the Advancement of Science 
62        American Society for Clinical Investigation
49        Association of American Physicians
2          Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators (present)
32        National Academy of Medicine
13        National Academy of Sciences
145      Faculty holding distinguished professorships

(does not include emeriti)


There are approximately 5,300 staff employed in the School of Medicine including 378 postdocs.



More than 12,000 health professions alumni from the Duke University School of Medicine span across the country and world, with the largest contingency located in North Carolina, California, and Florida. School of Medicine alumni provide critical support for School of Medicine research and education missions, including financial assistance for students and funding for research initiatives and endowed professorships. The Duke Medical Alumni Association supports and promotes the interests of the Duke University School of Medicine and its extended community and nurtures lifelong relationships and learning.

Health Professions Education Program Alumni (Living)12,232 Total Living Alumni

5,874       Doctor of Medicine (MD)
332          Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD)
1,907       Doctor of Physical Therapy Program (DPT)
2,604       Physician Assistant Program (MHS, PA-C)
23            Clinical Leadership (MHS)
609          Clinical Research Training Program (MHS)
205          Master of Biomedical Sciences
170          Master of Biostatistics
232          Master of Management in Clinical Informatics
213          Master of Science in Medical Physics
70            Pathologists’ Assistant Program (MHS)


Alumni By State

Living Health Professions Education Program Alumni, by the State Where They Live


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