AHEC Scholars

Robert Frost, in his poem, The Road Not Taken, tells of a journey where “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I – I took the one less traveled, and that has made all the difference.”

In South Dakota, there are many roads less traveled…and they are beckoning the future health provider…A new road has appeared…the road of the AHEC Scholar.

The South Dakota Area Health Education Center, or AHEC, collaborates with a network of community, state, health care and academic partners committed to meeting the healthcare workforce needs of South Dakota. SD AHEC fosters a continuum of interdisciplinary health professions education focusing on the healthcare needs of the most under-served in our state.

Our mission is connecting students to careers, professionals to communities and communities to better health. The AHEC Scholar program, developed by the SD AHEC, is being established to give health professional students’ innovative and interdisciplinary options in their academic and clinical journey. Choose from a variety of didactic and clinical experiences to make you the best candidate for a future career in health.

The AHEC Scholars program will offer activities focusing on six core topic areas:

Support a coordinated, patient-centered model of health care that involves an understanding of the contributions of multiple health care professionals in core topic #1: Interprofessional Education

Promote the development of integrated primary and behavioral health services to better address the needs of individuals with mental health and substance abuse conditions in core topic #2: Behavioral Health Integration

Examine the impact on economic stability, education, social/community context, health, neighborhood and built environment in core topic #3: Social Determinants of Health

Recognize and address the unique culture, language, and health literacy of diverse consumers and communities in core topic #4: Cultural Competency

Support quality improvement and patient-centered care through goal-setting, practice facilitation, workflow changes, measuring outcomes, and participating in team-based models in core topic #5: Practice Transformation

Gain a better understanding of new diseases, Zika for example, and crises such as the opioid epidemic through updated research and intervention practices in core topic #6: Current/Emerging Health Issues

The road less traveled is less traveled for a reason…Come…be part of something new…be part of something special…and blaze your own trail…it will make all the difference.