Section 1: Leadership and Mission

Strategic Vision Statement


The UNLV School of Medicine will be an innovative center for teaching a diverse group of future Nevada doctors how to work in health care teams, apply cutting-edge technology, and develop novel, yet classically-based treatment solutions for diseases of the present and future. The UNLV School of Medicine will be part of a world-class academic medical center that serves the community and works collaboratively with local health care institutions and professionals to enhance clinical care for all citizens including the development of specialized treatment programs while also developing nationally recognized research programs aimed at preventing, treating and curing diseases. The UNLV School of Medicine will integrate public undergraduate medical education and graduate medical education or residencies to cultivate more doctors staying to serve Southern Nevada residents. We will build clinical, education and research programs in cardiology, neuroscience, mental health and addiction, cancer and orthopedics.

Guiding Principles

  • Selecting and educating students who will stay or return to Nevada to practice medicine and / or teach.
  • Selecting and educating a diverse student body that will understand and value all cultural aspects of medicine.
  • Teaching and demonstrating to students the special needs and health care issues of an urban population that includes a large youth demographic, an increasing number of retirees and is host to approximately 40 million visitors annually.
  • Teaching students through problem- and team-based learning so students understand how to address medical issues with best practices -- educational space will be organized so interdisciplinary teams work and study together.
  • Educating students thoroughly in history taking and physical examination coupled with use of genomic information and advanced technology.


UNLV reaffirms its commitment to equality of educational and employment opportunity in its relationships with all members of the university community and its commitment to the elimination of any documented historical and continuing underutilization of women and minorities among the students, faculty, and staff. UNLV School of Medicine is committed to this program and is aware that with its implementation, positive benefits will be received from the greater utilization and development of previously underutilized human resources.

Administrative Offices

  • Barbara Atkinson, MD, Founding Dean

Academic Affairs

The Office of Academic Affairs and Education guides and oversees all aspects of medical student education. The Vice Dean for Academic Affairs and Education is the chief academic officer for the UNLV School of Medicine.

  • Ellen Cosgrove, MD, Vice Dean, Academic Affairs and Education

Admissions and Student Affairs

The Office of Admissions and Student Affairs is the primary point of contact and information for medical students. Faculty and staff are focused on supporting and assisting medical students throughout their medical education program at UNLV School of Medicine.

  • Samuel Parrish, MD, Senior Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Admissions
  • Ann Diggins, MA, Director, Admissions and Student Affairs

Education and Curriculum

This department in the Office of Academic Affairs oversees and coordinates all aspects of medical education for medical students, including scheduling, evaluations, curriculum management, and the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME).

A complete listing of administrative leadership, faculty and staff names, organization charts, and contact information is available online.

Diversity and Inclusion

This division, reporting directly to the Dean, will lead school-wide programs and initiatives to recruit and grow a diverse group of students, faculty, and staff to serve the health care and educational needs of Las Vegas.

  • Mario Gaspar de Alba, MD, Associate Dean, Diversity & Inclusion
  • Benita Wolff, M.Ed, Director, Diversity & Inclusion


The UNLV School of Medicine receives accreditation from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). They oversee and monitor accreditation for all allopathic (MD) medical schools in the U.S. and Canada. A complete timeline for the medical school accreditation process is available online. UNLV School of Medicine achieved preliminary accreditation in October 2016. It is anticipated that full accreditation will be granted in spring 2021, as the charter class graduates and receives their M.D. degrees.