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UM News
June 13, 2013

MISSOULA – Thirty high school juniors and seniors from across Montana will be attending MedStart: An Exploration of Health Care Careers, June 23-28. The weeklong program, held on the University of Montana campus and hosted by the Western Montana Area Health Education Center, is designed to expose students to a variety of health science fields and health care career opportunities.

More than 175 applicants from across the state vied for 90 available student placements in the 2013 MedStart program. Rural, first-generation college students were given priority, and student essays, transcripts and recommendations weighed heavily in the selection process.

During the camp, MedStart students will tour Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital and Rocky Mountain Laboratories in Hamilton; job shadow at ten local health care facilities; and attend presentations on environmental health science, forensic anthropology, psychology, dentistry, nutrition/herbal medicine, pharmacy, career assessment and college financial aid.

Participants also will have the opportunity to experience unique Missoula activities such as hiking the M, taking a group bike ride to Hoagieville for cheese fries and attending the Missoula Osprey baseball game on June 24. The week will culminate with a celebratory luncheon attended by students, parents and the administration of UM’s College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences.

Montana, and the nation as a whole, is facing a health care workforce shortage. To develop the next generation of health care providers, the Montana AHEC system has organized the MedStart Summer Camp as one way to spark student interest in pursuing careers in the health care field. June MedStart camps also will be hosted in Great Falls and Bozeman.

Western Montana AHEC MedStart is made possible through Montana State University’s GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness & Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) support and generous donations from Providence St. Patrick/St. Joseph Foundations, Kalispell Regional Healthcare Foundation, Community Medical Center Foundation, Clark Fork Valley Hospital Foundation and Mineral County Community Foundation.

For more information call Western Montana AHEC K-12 Program Coordinator Martha Robertson at 406-243-4746 or email





Contact: Martha Robertson, K-12 program coordinator, Western Montana Area Health Education Center at UM, 406-243-4746,