Senator Bradford Introduces Senate Resolution-43 Supporting Charles Drew University

June 19, 2017

Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) has introduced Senate Resolution 43, urging the National Trust for Historic Preservation to recognize Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science (CDU) in Los Angeles as an historic site eligible to receive Federal grants.

CDU’s vision is dedicated to cultivating diverse-health professionals, social justice, and health equity for underserved populations.  While CDU is currently recognized by the US Department of Education as a Historically Black Graduate Institute, it is not currently recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a Historically Black College and University (HBCU).  This recognition would increase CDU’s eligibility for federal funding and benefit the students and community immeasurably.

HBCU is defined as an institution established before 1964 with the intention of serving primarily members of the African American Community.  Most HBCU’s are located in former slave states. There are no HCBU’s west of Texas.

CDU was conceived in 1963 but not incorporated until 1966, following the report on the Watts Rebellion by the McCone Commission, which cited lack of nearby health facilities as a contributing factor. Since 1966 CDU has graduated more than 575 medical doctors, 2,700 post-graduate physicians, 1,200 physician assistances, 600 nurses, and hundreds of other health professionals.

In 1973 Governor Ronald Reagan signed Senate Bill 1026 by Senator Mervyn Dymally to appropriate funds to support the clinical health sciences education, research, and public service conducted by Charles Drew Postgraduate Medical School.

CDU is of historical significance relative to the migration of African Americans to Southern Los Angeles and the Watts Rebellion. CDU is also a charter member of the Hispanic-Serving Health Professions Schools organization and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

“Charles Drew University has been a fixture in the South LA community for over 50 years providing top tier community engagement and instruction.  Institutions such as CDU provide communities with the upward mobility through education that is critical to the development of a well-informed and prepared constituency.”