AHEC Scholars Fellowship

The AHEC Scholars Fellowship is a two-year program designed to improve a health professions student’s practice readiness skills. AHEC Scholars covers six topic areas related to the practice of health care.

Care that results from a practice team of primary care and behavioral health clinicians, working together with patients and families. This care may address mental health and substance abuse conditions, health behaviors (including their contribution to chronic medical illnesses), life stressors and crises, stress‐related physical symptoms, and ineffective patterns of health care utilization.

The effort to improve individual health and build healthy communities by training health care providers to recognize and address the unique culture, language and health literacy of diverse consumers and communities. An example of Cultural Competency in health care is the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) in Health and Healthcare.

A coordinated, patient‐centered model of health care that involves an understanding of the contributions of multiple health care professionals. Interprofessional Practice involves individuals from two or more disciplines with and from each other in effort to improve patient care.

The goal of practice transformation aims to fully support quality improvement and patient-centered care. It involves goalsetting, leadership, practice facilitation, workflow changes, measuring outcomes, and adapting organizational tools and processes to support new team-based models of care delivery.

The conditions in the environments in which people are born, live, learn, work, play, worship and age that affect a wide range of health, functioning and quality‐of‐life outcomes and risks. Social Determinants of Health includes five key areas (determinants) – Economic Stability, Education, Social and Community Context, Health and Health Care, and Neighborhood and Built Environment – and their impact on health.

Current or emerging issues in health care in Indiana. At this time, opioid abuse and related substance use disorder topic is the only approved emerging topic to use in this category.

Application Information

Each year, students complete 40 hours of online training through an online Learning Management System and another 40 hours of community-based learning in the field. Many students complete their community-based learning in a small rural community, but there are also options for working with urban underserved populations. Community-based learning components take place in clinics, hospitals, schools and community organizations. Through these experiences, students train side-by-side with practitioners, experts and health care professionals to purposefully engage Scholars in direct experiences. Obtaining these skills and practices in the field allows Scholars to increase knowledge, develop expertise, clarify values and develop their capacity to contribute to their communities.

The AHEC Network is split into eight regional cohorts, encompassing all 92 Indiana counties. Applicants should only indicate the AHEC region(s) that would be within driving distance given his/her housing situation. Each region can accept 15 students.

Each Scholar receives a stipend of $750.00 per year to help offset travel and related expenses, for a total of $1500.00 over the course of the fellowship.

Requirements for Participation

Applicants to this program must meet the following criteria.

  • Be in the final two years of an accredited health professions program (Two-year degree programs are eligible to apply.) Graduation year must be in 2021.
  • Have reliable transportation – this program includes multiple site visits across the selected AHEC region(s).
  • Be willing to submit to a criminal background check and drug screening.
  • Be available to participate for two years.
  • Be available to participate in 40 hours of online learning units and 40 hours of team-based community experiences per year (for two years).
  • Be willing to complete evaluations related to fellowship activities.
  • Be able to provide the necessary paperwork (such as W-9 and direct deposit form) to receive the stipend.
  • Be willing to respond to AHEC upon completion of the AHEC Scholars on an annual basis for updates on practice location and activities.

Students in an undergraduate prep program (e.g., Pre-Med/ Biology) are not eligible unless they are concurrently enrolled in a health professions undergraduate program, such as nursing, ASN/BSN). Pre-Nursing (ASN and BSN) are eligible to apply on the condition of successful matriculation into a selected program.

AHEC Region Selection

Applicants are asked to select up to three AHEC regions, where they have housing/ transportation available. Selection(s) should reflect the regions where the applicant lives, attends college, or has other important ties. All selections need to be regions where the applicant can reasonably participate in community experiences throughout the academic year as well as over the summer.

Eligible Programs

  • Allied Health (Clinical Lab Technology, Paramedic Science, Med Tech, Health informatics)
  • Audiologist
  • Behavioral Health (Psychology, Social Work, Mental Health Counselors, etc.)
  • Community Health Worker | Advocate
  • Dentistry (Dental Assistant, Dental Hygiene, General Dentistry, etc.)
  • Dietetics | Nutrition Science
  • Exercise Science
  • Health Administration
  • Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
  • Medicine (Medical Assistant, Optometry, Pathologist Assistant, Physician Assistant, DO | MD)
  • Nursing (CNA, LPN, LVN, Nurse Midwife, ASN, BSN, MSN, MS-NP, DNP, etc.)*
  • Nutrition / Nutrition Science
  • Occupational Therapy (includes: OTA)
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy (includes: PTA)
  • Public Health (All concentrations)
  • Radiation Therapy
  • Radiological Assistant
  • Radiological Technologist
  • Respiratory Therapy
  • Speech-Language Pathologist / Speech Therapy
  • Surgical Technologist
  • Veterinary Medicine (DVM)

Programs not mentioned above may still be eligible. Email the AHEC program staff to discuss other program options.