A leading edge 3-year MD program at the University of Calgary

Introduction of the Black Applicant Admissions Process (BAAP)

Today we formally announced the Black Applicant Admissions Process. We wish to thank our admissions colleagues at the University of Toronto who were pioneers in this regard with their BSAP program. More importantly, we are extremely grateful to the Calgary Black Medical Students Association for their strength and leadership in shaping this for the CSM.

Why a Black Applicant Admissions Process (BAAP)?

The Cumming School of Medicine recognizes that there is a need to increase diversity and promote equity at all levels of medicine including the MD admissions process. Historically members of the Black Community have been underrepresented in both the applicant pool and un undergraduate medical classes.

In June 2020, in response to a Call for Action Plan by the Calgary Black Medical Students Association (BMSA), and with their collaboration, The Black Applicant Admissions Process (BAAP) was introduced to support Black medical student representation at the University of Calgary. BAAP aims to limit any disadvantages Black applicants face during the application process attributed to their race or ethnicity.

What is BAAP?

The Black Applicant Admissions Process (BAAP) is an optional opportunity for Black applicants. Those who choose to be part of BAAP will undergo the same application process and are held to the same standards as the remainder of the applicant pool. The difference is that they will have members of the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community engage in their file review. Applicants to the BAAP may also include an optional personal essay highlighting why they have chosen to apply through this application stream (not scored). The files are otherwise anonymized to reviewers.

Who is eligible for BAAP?

Black applicants who self-identify as Black African, Black Caribbean, Black North American, or as multi-racial students identifying with their Black ancestry

How does BAAP differ from the regular application process?

Applicants who go through the BAAP will be evaluated in the same manner as the remainder of the applicant pool. During evaluation, they will be ranked against the remainder of the applicant pool. The major differences are that out of the file reviewers 50% will be from the BIPOC community and there is an optional essay that applicants may write to explain why they chose to apply through the BAAP.

When will BAAP come into effect?

The BAPP will come into effect in the 2020-21 application cycle.

Introducing the BAAP is a step in the right direction. However, there is a lot more we need to do in order to truly achieve equity in our admissions process. Our Office of Admissions and leadership team is committed to working with BIPOC leaders and other underrepresented groups to define the scope of the issues and find solutions to address them, not just within our UME program but in all our undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate programs.