The Nebraska Area Health Education Center (AHEC) Program at UNMC hosted 11 students from the Rural Health Opportunities Program (RHOP), Kearney Health Opportunities Program (KHOP), and Urban Health Opportunities Program (UHOP) last week (May 6-10).
The students were on campus for a weeklong, one-credit course, “Health Professions Opportunities Workshop: Integration of Prevention and Population Health Across the Health Professions,” led by AHEC in the Department of Family Medicine.
“The workshop is intended to expose pre-health professions students in our pathway programs to concepts important in primary care such as cultural competency, social determinants of health, and leadership,” said Nicole Carritt, deputy director of the Nebraska AHEC Program. “The workshop is one piece of the puzzle to developing the future health workforce that is ready to lead in Nebraska’s changing health care environment.”
The workshop hit the mark, students reported.
“This has been a great experience for me,” said Jarred Glinn, a junior at Wayne State College in the RHOP program. “It’s opened my eyes to the current problems in health care and how real it will be for me when I practice.”
Glinn, who wants to be a pharmacist, said he was particularly surprised by the similarities rural and minority urban populations share in lack of access to health care.
The RHOP, KHOP and UHOP pathway programs are designed to find undergraduate students from rural and underserved communities who want to study medicine, nursing or one of the seven other eligible health professions at UNMC.
The students spent a day at Beatrice Community Hospital and Health Center, Beatrice, Neb., experiencing “real world” rural health care. They heard from the hospital’s senior leadership and their community partners who discussed how they work together to increase access to health care and meet the health workforce needs within Gage County. They also discussed how community partners work to improve health and health outcomes through prevention and population health strategies.
“This was inspiring for me,” said Emily Hand, a junior at Chadron State College. “I saw how important the hospital is to rural communities. It really takes the hospital, education and business to keep a community healthy. It has inspired me to practice sports medicine in a rural community.”
Students from 10 communities, took part in the workshop.
Below is a list of the names of the students, the program they are enrolled in and the school they attend by hometown in alphabetical order.
Aurora: Jared Glinn, Wayne State College, RHOP, Pre-Pharmacy.
Blair: Morgan Schenck, University of Nebraska at Omaha, KHOP, Pre-Pharmacy.
Columbus: Emily Hand, Chadron State College, RHOP, Pre-Physical Therapy.
Fremont: Brawly Taylor, Chadron State College, RHOP, Pre-Medicine.
Grand Island: Abby Campbell, University of Nebraska at Kearney, KHOP, Pre-Nursing.
Gothenburg: Madison Coulter, Chadron State College, RHOP, Pre-Medical Laboratory Science.
Ravenna: Brooke Chramosta, Chadron State College, RHOP, Pre-Physician Assistant.
Omaha: Tobi Lawani, University of Nebraska at Omaha, UHOP, Togo-West Africa, Pre-Medicine; and Elias Witte, University of Nebraska at Omaha, UHOP, Pre-Dental.
Schuyler: Kellie Kroeger, Wayne State College, RHOP, Pre-Pharmacy.
Scottsbluff/Gering: Mikhail Thanawalla, Chadron State College, RHOP, Pre-Medicine.