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Rural Health Information Hub

Rural Project Examples: Health workforce pipeline

Promising Examples

Successfully Training and Educating Pre-medical Students (STEPS)
Updated/reviewed November 2021
  • Need: To increase the number of primary care providers in northeast Kentucky.
  • Intervention: STEPS provides support such as physician shadowing, mock interviews, and MCAT practice exams for regional students applying to medical school.
  • Results: 88% of participants have been accepted into medical school. The program has been replicated among most of Kentucky's regional AHECs.

Other Project Examples

Frontier Area Rural Mental Health Camp and Mentorship Program (FARM CAMP)
Updated/reviewed September 2022
  • Need: To reduce the shortage of behavioral health professionals in rural Nebraska.
  • Intervention: A week-long camp teaches high school students in rural and tribal communities about different career options in behavioral health and provides mentorship after the camp ends.
  • Results: In 2022, 10 high school students participated in the camp, and a former camper returned to present on their work in a psychology lab at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Rescue Divas EMT Recruitment
Updated/reviewed June 2022
  • Need: Increased number of emergency medical technicians in rural northern Wisconsin.
  • Intervention: Creation of a program, Rescue Divas, for middle school girls to spark interest in emergency medical services careers.
  • Results: Post-participation results demonstrate the camp increases interest in an emergency medical services career.
funded by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy FORWARD NM Pathways to Health Careers
Updated/reviewed November 2021
  • Need: New Mexico's southwestern counties of Hidalgo, Catron, Luna, and Grant have experienced chronic shortages of primary care providers. New Mexico has the oldest physician population in the country.
  • Intervention: A comprehensive workforce pipeline program, including programming for middle and high school students, undergraduate and graduate students, primary care program students, and medical and dental residents.
  • Results: The program reaches over 1,000 school-aged students throughout the service areas and hosts students in a variety of healthcare related programs for rural rotation experiences. It has also gained partnership with the HMS-Family Medicine Residency Program since 2013 and designation as an Area Health Education Center (AHEC) since 2012.
Club Scrub
Updated/reviewed August 2020
  • Need: Rural Wisconsin communities experience threatened healthcare infrastructure due to workforce shortages.
  • Intervention: The Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative, in partnership with the Wisconsin Office of Rural Health, created a youth program to increase awareness of health-related professions known as Club Scrub.
  • Results: Middle-school students attend the program and gain a better understanding of career options in the healthcare industry.
Project PROMISE
Updated/reviewed April 2019
  • Need: An increased interest among young people to pursue a medical career in rural North Carolina
  • Intervention: Two medical students started a program that gives high school seniors medical academic training, mentor relationships, and hands-on experience in rural North Carolina facilities.
  • Results: Project PROMISE has graduated 26 high school students, 7 of whom are pursuing an undergraduate degree with an interest in studying medicine.