The Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education

Our Purpose, Values, Goals

At the Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education, our purpose is to support and enhance an anti-racist, anti-oppressive learning, training, and work environment in medical, biomedical, and health professions education. We also hope to serve as a national resource for consultation and best practices.

Our core values are:

  • Mutual Liberation
    • Racism and bias affects everyone. Mutual liberation requires empathy, compassion, and love. 
  • Transformation
    • We believe in change that is an emerging lifelong journey of learning and unlearning, toward a destination that cannot be known. It requires patience, courage, trust, transparency, and vulnerability, and values the importance of making mistakes and course correcting.   
  • Love of Humanity  
    • Our work is relational and requires inclusive empowerment.
  • Mutual Accountability  
    • We value deep and sustained relationships formed from taking responsibility for our actions and words.
  • Rigor, Scholarship, and Excellence 
    • We pride ourselves in advancing the work and legacy of those who came before us and sacrificed on our behalf.  

As we seek to create circles and not lines through dialogue, we also hope to disrupt patterns of behavior with feedback and self-assessment. We want to make sure that we make space for marginalized voices to be able to prioritize joy, enthusiasm, rest, co-creation, and healing at the Institute. 

We are committed to the journey of becoming a leader in anti-racism and anti-bias in health care.


At the Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education, we aim to teach health sciences educators, across disciplines and health professions, to dismantle and disrupt racism, bias, and oppression. Our Institute provides learning opportunities to accelerate anti-racist and anti-biased transformational change in educational programs through systems change, strategic planning, and priority setting. 

We hope to measure the impact of racism, oppression, and bias on biomedical and health professions education by establishing inclusive and equitable learning and teaching environments grounded in anti-racist and anti-biased pedagogy.

We also provide opportunities and support for our students, staff, and faculty to do this important work and investigate its impact.

Our findings will be disseminated via scholarship and external consultation. We look forward to cultivating relationships with philanthropists and foundations, as well as federal, state, and local government agencies.

Our Story

The Center for Anti-racism in Practice (CAP) was created in 2021 in an effort to integrate anti-racism efforts across the Medical School and the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. 

Over the past two years, CAP focused on three core areas:  

  • Teaching and learning design: building the capacity among our educators to create inclusive and equitable learning environments grounded in anti-racist pedagogy, through efforts like the curriculum clinics.  
  • Organizational and strategy development: systems change work, strategic planning, and priority setting. 
  • Integration: integrating current research on race and illness into scientific investigation and clinical learning to lead school-wide interventions.  

In September 2023, the Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education was established to expand upon Icahn Mount Sinai’s efforts to be an anti-racist, anti-biased learning and training environment in medical and graduate education. As part of this new initiative, the CAP portfolio and staff were formally integrated into the Institute. 

As we embrace this change, we would like to thank the members of the Icahn Mount Sinai community who have believed in and collaborated with the work of CAP over the last two years. We are excited to continue building upon the legacy of CAP in this next phase and look forward to working with you all as part of the new Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education. 

The Institute for Equity and Justice in Health Sciences Education Team

Leona Hess, PhD, MSW
Jay Johnson, CHES
Chloe Martin, MSW
David Muller, MD
Ann-Gel S. Palermo, DrPH, MPH
Talia Swartz, MD, PhD
Joseph Truglio, MD