Feinberg School of Medicine

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Northwestern University
Feinberg School of Medicine
Type Private
Established 1859
Parent institution
Northwestern University
Endowment US$1.9 Billion[1]
Dean Eric G. Neilson[2]
Academic staff
Students 3,069 Total[4]
670 MD
351 PhD Students
Other students
301 Post-Doctoral Fellows
1,090 Residents and Fellows
Location Chicago, Illinois, USA
41°53′47″N 87°37′09″W / 41.8963°N 87.6193°W / 41.8963; -87.6193Coordinates: 41°53′47″N 87°37′09″W / 41.8963°N 87.6193°W / 41.8963; -87.6193
Campus Urban

The Feinberg School of Medicine, located in the Streeterville neighborhood of Chicago, in the U.S. state of Illinois and situated near Lake Michigan and the Magnificent Mile, is one of Northwestern University's 12 schools and colleges. The medical school offers a full-time Doctor of Medicine degree program, multiple joint degree programs, graduate medical education, and continuing medical education.

The mission of the Feinberg School of Medicine is to educate the next generation of physicians and scientists. It is a research-intensive institution, ranked 19th among American medical schools for research by U.S. News & World Report in 2015.[5] It also is committed to patient care and community service.[6] Through its affiliates, Feinberg faculty provide patient care to thousands of individuals every year. Feinberg and partner Northwestern Memorial HealthCare are together a $3 billion enterprise[7][8] The school employs 3,400 faculty members.[9]


Originally founded as the medical department of Lind University on October 11, 1859[10] and renamed the Chicago Medical College in 1863, the school affiliated with Northwestern University in 1870. In 1891, the name was changed to Northwestern University Medical School. It had occupied buildings on the near south side of Chicago from 1863[11] until the Montgomery Ward Memorial Building was constructed in Streeterville in 1926.[12]

Northwestern University Medical School was renamed the Feinberg School of Medicine in 2002, reflecting a $75 million donation from the Joseph and Bessie Feinberg Foundation. Reuben Feinberg started to donate to the university after being hospitalized at Northwestern Memorial Hospital for a heart attack. The first donation, in 1988, was for $17 million to establish the Feinberg Cardiovascular Research Institute. A $10 million donation was subsequently sent in 1996 to establish the Frances Evelyn Feinberg Clinical Neurosciences Institute.

The Montgomery Ward Memorial building at the Feinberg School of Medicine

Northwestern was also affiliated with a medical school for women. Established as the Woman's Hospital Medical College in 1870, it later changed its name to the Woman's Medical College of Chicago and became affiliated with Northwestern University in 1892 as Northwestern University Woman's Medical School.[13]

On September 1, 2013, Northwestern Medical Faculty Foundation, the medical school's physician's group, joined Northwestern Memorial HealthCare's physician's group. The combined doctors group operates under the brand "Northwestern Medicine." [14]


The Feinberg School of Medicine is part of the McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University, one of the nation's leading academic medical centers focused on research, education and clinical services. Other McGaw members include the Anne & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and Jesse Brown VA Medical Center (formerly VA Chicago Health Care System). Medical students and residents receive their clinical training at these hospitals, where nearly all the attending staff members have faculty appointments at the Feinberg School of Medicine. Residents may also train at affiliates such as John H. Stroger Jr Hospital of Cook County, Norwegian American Hospital and the Erie Family Health Center, MacNeal Hospital and Methodist Hospital, Gary, Indiana.

The medical school's primary teaching hospital is Northwestern Memorial Hospital, a 2,200,000-square-foot (200,000 m2) modern hospital that was completed in 1999. In the 2014-2015 US News and World Report list of "Honor Roll" Hospitals, listing the top 17 medical centers in the United States, Northwestern Memorial Hospital was ranked 10th and first in Illinois.[15] The Feinberg Pavilion, the inpatient tower, partially reflects a $10 million donation from Feinberg. Prior to this $600 million addition to the Chicago skyline, the teaching hospitals were built in 1865. Films such as While You Were Sleeping were shot in the old Northwestern hospitals; the old, pictureless ID badges of Northwestern Memorial are clearly visible in the film.

The Feinberg School of Medicine is home to 670 medical students. The class of students graduating in 2014 were the 155th graduating class. In 2014, 7,727 people applied and 630 were interviewed for 163 seats. The median undergraduate GPA and MCAT score for successful applicants are 3.87 and 36, respectively.[16]

Curriculum and degrees[edit]

In fall 2012, Feinberg's entering medical students began a new curriculum, organized into three phases and emphasizing integration of four main curricular elements: science in medicine, clinical medicine, health & society, and professional development. The goal of the renewal process is to build a more learner-centered educational program that (1) fully integrates scientific principles in a clinical context; (2) stimulates inquiry and investigation; (3) has an assessment system that comprehensively evaluates student achievement in each of the core competencies; (4) reinforces a culture of learning, teamwork, and excellence; (5) is flexible and able to meet the unique needs of individual students as they learn and differentiate.[17]

For medical students, the school offers four-year dual degree programs, which combine the Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree with a Master of Public Health (MPH), a Master of Arts in Medical Humanities and Bioethics, or a Master of Science in Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety (MS). Students electing to pursue the additional degrees enroll in evening classes and graduate with both degrees. Two MD/PhD programs are offered, one in combination with Northwestern University's Graduate School (Medical Scientist Training Program) and one with the University's Institute for Neuroscience.

The school also offers graduate degree programs, some in combination with other Northwestern University professional schools:

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in basic science programs such as Biological Sciences and Clinical Psychology, and public health programs such as Health and Biomedical Informatics, Health Services and Outcomes Research, Epidemiology, and Translational Outcomes Science
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
  • Master of Medical Science (MMSc) in Physician Assistant Studies
  • Master of Public Health (MPH)
  • Master of Science (MS) in programs such as Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Clinical Investigation, Genetic Counseling, Regulatory Compliance, or Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety
  • Master of Medical Informatics (MMI)
  • Master of Prosthetics and Orthotics (MPO)

Additionally, the school offers a BS/MD degree through the Honors Program in Medical Education (HPME), a seven-year combined undergraduate and medical school program.


According to public financial data for Feinberg, support for competitive research grants from all external sources totaled $389.8 million in academic year 2013-2014.[18] In 2014, Feinberg ranked 21st for NIH funding among American medical schools.[19] The medical school houses 31 Core Facilities, including a Bioinformatics Consulting Core, Genomics Core and Human Embryonic and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Core.[20]

Faculty in the Research program at Feinberg study and mentor in a range of areas, including cancer biology, cell biology, chemical biology, drug discovery, developmental biology, evolutionary biology, genetics, genomics, medical biology, immunology, microbial pathogenesis, neurobiology, pharmacology, structural biology, biochemistry, epidemiology, behavioral sciences, preventive medicine, epidemiology, health outcomes, quality improvement, and translational sciences.

Robert Furchgott, a graduate of the class of 1940, received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1998 for his discovery of the role of nitric oxide as a signaling molecule.[21]


In 2015, Feinberg was ranked 19th among American medical research schools by U.S. News & World Report.[22] In addition, the school is nationally ranked 13th among residency directors and 11th in student selectivity, reflecting an admissions acceptance rate of 6.5 percent of applicants.

Recent growth[edit]

Research space has grown 88 percent and education space 67 percent since 2000. The number of full-time faculty has also grown to over 1500, reflecting a 20 percent increase since 2000. The medical school's endowment topped $1 billion in 2005.[23] In 2013, Northwestern announced an additional $1 billion investment in creating a leading medical research enterprise. This includes the construction of a new state-of-the-art research building on the site of the former Prentice Women’s Hospital, 320 E. Huron St. The new building will be connected to the existing Robert H. Lurie Medical Research Center. Northwestern’s plans include 300,000 to 500,000 square feet of research space with eventual build-out of approximately 1.2 million square feet. Additionally, more than 250,000 square feet of space in existing campus buildings will be converted to new laboratory space.[24]

Notable alumni[edit]


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  2. ^ http://www.feinberg.northwestern.edu/dean/
  3. ^ "Faculty Overview". Northwestern University. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  4. ^ http://www.feinberg.northwestern.edu/about/students/index.html[full citation needed]
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  12. ^ Arey, Leslie B. (1979). Northwestern University Medical School, 1859-1979 (PDF). Evanston, IL: Northwestern University. p. 223. 
  13. ^ Smith, Avis; Marie J. Mergler; et al. (1896). Eliza H. Root; H. G. Cutler, eds. Woman's Medical School, Northwestern University: (Woman's Medical College of Chicago): the institution and its founders: class histories, 1870-1896. Chicago: H.G. Cutler. 
  14. ^ "Med school docs join Northwestern Memorial". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  15. ^ http://health.usnews.com/health-news/best-hospitals/articles/2013/07/16/best-hospitals-2013-14-overview-and-honor-roll
  16. ^ http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-medical-schools/research-rankings
  17. ^ Thomas, John X., Jr.; Green, Marianne; Sanguino, Sandra; Curry, Raymond H. (September 2010). "Northwestern University The Feinberg School of Medicine". Academic Medicine 85 (9): S211–S214. doi:10.1097/ACM.0b013e3181e8da5d. Retrieved 7 December 2011. 
  18. ^ "Research Facts". Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Northwestern University. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  19. ^ "NIH Reporter". NIH Reporter. National Institutes of Health. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  20. ^ "Feinberg School of Medicine Cores Program". Northwestern University. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  21. ^ Rabelink AJ (December 1998). "Nobelprijs Geneeskunde en Fysiologie 1998 vanwege de betekenis van stikstofmonoxide als signaalmolecuul" [Nobel prize in Medicine and Physiology 1998 for the discovery of the role of nitric oxide as a signalling molecule]. Nederlands Tijdschrift Voor Geneeskunde (in Dutch) 142 (52): 2828–30. PMID 10065255. INIST:9912174. 
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  23. ^ "Revenues and Expenditures: Market Value of Endowments by Type Comparison Group: All Schools, All Regions; Year 2012". Revenues and Expenditures: Market Value of Endowments by Type. AAMC. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  24. ^ http://www.northwestern.edu/newscenter/stories/2013/01/northwestern-medicine-plans-1b-research-investment.html
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  26. ^ Hill, Henry W. (1923). Municipality of Buffalo, New York: a History 1720-1923, v. IV. New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Co. 
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  31. ^ Limb, Peter. "Xuma, Alfred Bitini (1893–1962), politician and physician in South Africa". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 28 November 2011. 
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  33. ^ Roberts, Sam (2015-09-15). "Dr. Deborah Asnis, Who Sounded Alert on West Nile Virus Outbreak, Dies at 59". New York Times. Retrieved 2015-10-10. 

External links[edit]