History and Mission

Mission of Harvard Medical School

To nurture a diverse, inclusive community dedicated to alleviating suffering and improving health and well-being for all through excellence in teaching and learning, discovery and scholarship, and service and leadership.

The mission of Harvard Medical School Graduate Education is to teach, advise, and nurture a diverse, inclusive community of scholars that generate and disseminate new discoveries in life sciences to improve health and knowledge for all.

Harvard Medical School trains about 700 MD students, supports over 700 PhD students registered in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and enrolls over 250 Master’s degree students. Master’s degree programs are offered in bioethics, biomedical informatics, clinical investigation, clinical service operations, global health delivery, healthcare quality and safety, immunology, and medical education, with new programs in regular development.

PhD research training is provided in biological and biomedical sciences, bioinformatics and integrative genomics, biophysics, chemical biology, immunology, neuroscience, speech and hearing bioscience and technology, systems, synthetic, and quantitative biology, and virology and takes place both on the Quad and in hospital laboratories. Perhaps Harvard Medical School's most enduring contribution has been the education of leaders of medicine and health care, establishing a standard of excellence in research, teaching, and the care of patients in America and increasingly in other countries. In the academic realm, Harvard Medical School has trained more current full-time academic faculty, department chairs, and medical school deans than any other single medical school. The challenge of each generation of students is to carry on that proud tradition.