The UC Riverside (UCR) School of Medicine has accepted its first class of California Medicine Fellows. This spring, these community college students from inland Southern California will receive academic support as they study medicine.
The 37 students are part of the new state-funded California Medicine Scholars Program (CMSP), which seeks to diversify the field of primary care and address health care workforce shortages. Students will have access to mentoring, networking and advising opportunities, internships and volunteer health experiences through the Regional Center for Health Care Opportunities (RHHO) at the UCR School of Medicine.
“With CMSP, I am thrilled that community college students are part of a four-year community college to medical school pathway program, complete with mentorship, internships and professional development,” said Teresa Cofield, director of pathway programs at the medical school. “More importantly, students are part of a regional and national network of resources. The program is in line with our mission to grow our own doctors, especially to fill the shortage of primary care doctors in the region.”
Nearly half (42%) of black and Latino Californians say their community lacks an adequate number of primary care providers, according to a February survey by the California Health Care Foundation and NORC at the University of Chicago.
CMSP has four RHHOs. The UCR School of Medicine leads the Inland Empire RHHO, while the other three RHHOs are led by the UC Davis School of Medicine; UC San Diego School of Medicine; and UCSF School of Medicine-Fresno.