New York State is home to over 450 colleges and universities, and of those, only 15 offer Doctor of Medicine degrees. The strongest of those programs are listed below chosen based on their reputations, faculty, facilities, and clinical experiences.
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Located in the Bronx, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine is affiliated with Yeshiva University. The college is home to over 1,800 full-time faculty, 711 MD students, and 160 PhD students. The college defines itself as a “research-intensive medical school” that trains students to not just be excellent doctors, but to create new knowledge. The college also has a focus that goes beyond the biological sciences, as students draw from the humanities and social sciences to become catalysts for social change. Einstein’s urban location gives students access to diverse clinical opportunities in three boroughs of New York City as well as on Long Island.
One of the eight prestigious Ivy League schools, Columbia University is also home to one of New York State’s best medical schools. Located about 50 blocks north of Columbia’s main campus in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons is part of the 20-acre Columbia University Medical Center. The college is affiliated with the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, one of the top hospitals in the nation. The New York State Psychiatric Institute is also affiliated with the college, so students have plenty of nearby clinical opportunities.
The college is home to 620 students and 2,087 full-time faculty. The admissions process is highly selective—of 7,537 applicants, just 258 received offers of admission.
Another member of the Ivy League, Cornell University’s medical school consistently does well in the national rankings. Weill Cornell Medicine shouldn’t be associated with Cornell’s rural main campus in New York’s Finger Lakes Region. A small city in Upstate New York simply can’t provide the breadth of clinical experiences that can be found in an urban center. The medical school sits along the East River in Manhattan’s Lenox Hill neighborhood. Weill Cornell Medicine receives an impressive 1.7 million annual patient visits, and students gain hands-on experience with clerkships in areas such as neurology, psychiatry, surgery, anesthesiology, obstetrics/gynecology, and primary care.
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Medical schools don’t need to be affiliated with a university, and the Icahn School of Medicine illustrates this point well. This highly regarded school is home to over 5,000 faculty members and 2,000 students, residents, and fellows. The School of Medicine is part of the Mount Sinai Health System, which includes eight hospital campuses and hundreds of clinical affiliations throughout the greater New York City area. Students clearly will find no shortage of clinical opportunities. The Icahn School of Medicine’s campus sits on the edge of Central Park, just north of the reservoir. The school’s admissions process is highly selective, but once admitted, students encounter a collaborative learning environment focused on people as much as the latest medical practices.
New York University
Yet another excellent medical school in New York City, NYU Langone Health offers much to recommend it. The school has made numerous changes in recent years to fulfill its missions “to teach, to serve, and to discover.” One of the significant problems with medical education is that students tend to graduate with six-figure debt, and they often choose specialties and practices that will maximize income to pay off that debt. At NYU, every MD student receives a full-tuition scholarship regardless of their financial situation. This frees students to follow their interests and to work in communities that are under-served. The university has also increased the flexibility of its MD programs to offer numerous dual-degree options as well as an accelerated three-year option.
Not all of New York State’s top medical schools are in New York City. Stony Brook University’s Renaissance School of Medicine offers an excellent MD program on the school’s Long Island campus. Each year, the school is home to over 500 medical students and 750 medical residents, and students have plenty of clinical opportunities through the Stony Brook Medicine network that includes Stony Brook University Hospital, Stony Brook Children’s Hospital, Stony Brook Southhampton Hospital, and a score of smaller health facilities. The school also has a global reach, and every year over 50 MD students participate in programs in Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin American, and the Middle East.
University of Rochester
Even further from New York City, the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry offers what is arguably the best MD program in Western New York. The school introduces MD students to clinical experiences early in their educations, and the school has what it calls a “revolutionary biopsychosocial model” to medicine that aids doctors in approaching medicine more holistically as they recognize the whole person, not just the disease. The school has 1,200 full-time faculty members, and it admits 96 MD students each year. Students will find a wealth of clinical opportunities at Strong Memorial Hospital, Golisano Children’s Hospital, and numerous other affiliated hospitals, urgent care facilities, senior care facilities, and outpatient treatment centers in Central and Western New York.