MSCM healthcare worker

KGI Announces New Online Degree Program: Master of Science in Community Medicine

Weeks after the Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) School of Medicine announced a partnership with L.A. Care Health Plan—the nation’s largest publicly operated health plan—the school has announced its first degree offering: A Master of Science in Community Medicine (MSCM), slated to enroll in fall 2021.

The two-year online MSCM program will prepare students as skilled community medicine practitioners to work in the safety net community clinics, federally qualified health centers, public health departments, healthcare systems, non-governmental organizations, and industries that serve those communities.

Students will have careers devoted to improving health, preventing illness and injury, and detecting treatable medical conditions early enough to avoid premature death and unnecessary poor health.

“Our new MSCM program enables students from different backgrounds and educational experiences to learn in a course of study designed to ensure their success while holding them to the high standards of excellence and rigor,” said Dr. David Lawrence, Dean of the KGI School of Medicine.

The MSCM program is somewhat similar to a Master of Public Health (MPH), but with distinct differences. An MPH is a broad, general public health graduate degree that prepares public health professionals to work in a wide range of public health and community settings, and whose general purpose is to improve health.

KGI’s MSCM is a focused, skills, and knowledge-based graduate degree that prepares leaders and practitioners who work in underserved and underrepresented communities to decrease demand for medical care services by improving health and preventing disease and illness.

Because courses will be taught entirely online, students from anywhere in the country will have increased access to the program. In addition to online courses, students will experience real-world, community-based learning occurring in the student’s geographical location.

After graduating with a MSCM degree, students are qualified to enter the workforce directly or seek further training as physicians or other health professionals.

“We want MSCM graduates to be the bridge between individuals, families, and their communities, and assess and improve the healthcare system’s performance,” Lawrence said.

As the new program prepares for its first semester in fall 2021, the first cohort will receive full tuition waivers. For more information about the program, please visit kgi.edu/mscm. Applications will be opening soon.