College of Medicine / Diversity Initiatives / Office for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion



Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine
Florida Atlantic University
777 Glades Road
Boca Raton, FL 33431


Message from the Chief Officer for Justice, Equity, Diversity and  Inclusion

fernander profileI consider it a privilege to serve as the inaugural Chief Officer for Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (CJEDIO) within the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University and to be able to build upon the successes of the former Associate Dean for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion – Dr. Julie Servoss. The new JEDI Office, established in June of 2021, is charged with implementing the College of Medicine’s Race to Equity Strategic Action Plan. Our ultimate mission is to contribute to the creation of a healthy and thriving community and nation, through actively nurturing an academic medical COMMUNITY that the revolutionary Dr. Martin Luther King envisioned as “BELOVED” and a community within which activist Valerie Kaur describes us as “SEEING NO STRANGER”. Such a STRANGERLESS BELOVED COMMUNITY can only be achieved through intentional proactive attention to the principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion where the political and social determinants of health and access to quality healthcare are equitably distributed. I thank and invite the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine community and constituents to join me in this critical and courageous journey!


To foster a just, equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment within which every member of the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine community is provided opportunities to achieve their full potential.


To transform the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine into a hub for justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion where no one is disadvantaged from achieving their professional and career potential on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion, disability, socioeconomic status, age, geography, or other identity.


Justice/Restorative Justice: We are committed to fostering an environment of fairness and accountability where our community of learners, researchers, clinicians, and staff can thrive.

Equity: We are committed to nurturing an environment where every College of Medicine constituent has equitable opportunities to thrive and no one is disadvantaged from achieving their full potential.

Diversity: We recognize diversity as a core value that embodies inclusiveness, mutual respect, and multiple perspectives. In this context, we are mindful of all aspects of human differences including, socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, language, nationality, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, and geography.

Inclusion: We recognize that an inclusive climate and culture is a core element for successfully achieving diversity and that inclusion can only be achieved through intentional education, policies, and practices.

Belonging: We are committed to creating and nurturing a community where everyone within our College of Medicine is seen and feels accepted, included, beloved, and valued.

Advocacy: We are committed to not simply be passive ally’s but to recognize our professional responsibility as healthcare providers, educators, and biomedical researchers to actively advocate for systematically disadvantaged and marginalized members of our community.

Under-Represented in Medicine and Biomedical Research: We are committed to addressing issues of under-representation in medicine and biomedical research. Under-representation most commonly refers to racial/ethnic populations that are under-represented in the medical and scientific research workforce relative to their numbers in the general population. The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have traditionally defined these groups as: Blacks/African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Alaska Natives/American Indians, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders. For further information on under-representation in medicine definitions please visit: and


Last Modified 11/30/21