The B.A.-M.D. Program is a combined undergraduate and medical degree program run jointly by Brooklyn College and SUNY Downstate Medical Center. In the first four years, at Brooklyn College, the students take the program's curriculum of pre-med science courses, and they also earn a bachelor's degree in the major of their choice. Students spend the next four years at SUNY Downstate Medical Center and earn their M.D. The B.A.-M.D. Program was inaugurated in 1969, and many of its graduates are now leaders in their communities and fields of medicine.
Brooklyn College is one of the senior colleges of the City University of New York (CUNY). The Princeton Review ranked Brooklyn College first for "most beautiful campus" in 2003 and among the top 10 of "America’s Best Value Colleges" in 2004 and 2005. Brooklyn College has a longstanding reputation as one of the nation's exemplary urban/public liberal arts institutions. Undergraduates in the B.A.-M.D. Program are not restricted to any particular major, and recent students have majored in anthropology, art history, biology, creative writing, philosophy, psychology, sociology, and many other fields. B.A.-M.D. students form a tight-knit community at Brooklyn College. A Student Committee, in which all students are encouraged to participate, organizes activities and coordinates program events such as the Freshman Welcome Dinner. B.A.-M.D. students have use of the Brooklyn College Honors Academy, a gathering, socializing and studying space equipped with group tables, study areas and computers. The undergraduate half of the program provides a full and well-rounded education intended to leave its mark on students as they develop into compassionate, socially conscious and communicative caregivers.
Downstate Medical Center of the State University of New York (SUNY) is one of the country's leading urban medical centers. As the only academic medical center in Brooklyn, it serves a population of 2.3 million, large enough to qualify Brooklyn itself as the fourth largest city in the United States. This population is one of the most diverse in the world, and the Medical Center engages this community. The College of Medicine ranks seventh nationwide in the number of graduates who are now in academic medicine. Downstate has pioneered the practice of teaching medicine at the hospital bedside, rejecting the notion that physicians can be trained primarily in lecture halls. Consequently, Downstate boasts a strong record in residency placements for its graduates.
B.A.-M.D. students receive, during their four Brooklyn College years, a scholarship that fully covers in-state tuition. As far as the medical school years, SUNY Downstate has a significantly lower tuition ($18,800 for the 2005–06 academic year for New York residents), compared to private or out-of-state medical school options. Graduates of the B.A.-M.D. Program embark on their medical careers without the tremendous burden of debt typical of U.S. medical school graduates. This freedom from debt often translates to expanded freedom in career choice.