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Fully Integrated Readiness for Service Training (FIRST): Enhancing the Continuum from Medical School to Residency to Practice

Healthcare Industry

Organizations Involved

Occupations Involved

Workforce Development Focus

Workforce Issues Addressed

4-Year IHE

University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine

Medical students, Other: residents, Physician group

Increasing number of healthcare workers

Training individuals to work in a healthcare profession; providing a benefit or incentive that encourages individuals to pursue a healthcare profession


The Fully Integrated Readiness for Service Training (FIRST) program at University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine aims to increase the number of physicians working in rural and underserved communities in North Carolina. FIRST is a program that is funded by a grant from the American Medical Association's "Reimagining Residency" initiative. FIRST is unique in that FIRST scholars spend complete a three-year accelerated and enhanced medical program, which helps them save money, and scholars start spending time in a clinic working in their intended specialty starting year 1 of medical school, helping them be prepared for residency and medical service. FIRST scholars that complete the 3-year medical school curriculum have a directed pathway into one of UNC's affiliated North Carolina Residency Programs. After their residency, they are obligated to complete 3 years of service in a rural and/or underserved community in North Carolina.

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