The book's author, James L. Curtis, M.D., was previously the associate dean of Cornell University Medical College and the architect of Cornell's affirmative action program. In this book, he strives to produce the data needed to design and implement effective affirmative action programs. For the medical students in the longitudinal study, he traces the impact that their ethnicity, economic status, medical school, and gender had on eventual practice patterns—for example, communities served and specialty choice. Curtis produces data to address many of the controversies and debates in affirmative action. In addition, he includes well-organized comparative charts and summaries of affirmative action efforts by region and even by school. The book ends with a section containing suggestions for affirmative action in the future.