Rural Health Experience

The Rural Health Experience (RHE) program is an innovative 3-5 day opportunity for health professions students to observe rural healthcare providers and their communities. The RHE program is based on the principles of experiential learning and community immersion.   

Program objectives for RHE students:
  • Learn about the social and health characteristics, needs, and resources of a specific rural Illinois community
  • Understand the roles and responsibilities of different healthcare providers in a rural community
  • Reflect on a future career as a healthcare provider in a rural community
  • Establish professional contacts in a formal healthcare setting
What to expect as an RHE student:
  • Shadowing experiences in multiple hospital departments including but not limited to: EMT/ER, medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy, social work and behavioral health, public health, and laboratory and technical specialists
  • Shadowing experiences within the local community at clinics and/or health departments
  • When available: meetings with administration and observations of inter-professional team meetings
The experience:
Basic housing and limited meals are provided to RHE students. Time in the evenings will be available for students to explore the community. Students must have reliable transportation while on site.
RHE sites are located throughout the state. Students will have the opportunity to rank their site locations on the RHE application. Once matched to a site, students will work with a representative from the hospital to schedule the dates of their RHE.
Who should apply:
Undergraduate and graduate students, as well as professional students in health professions programs. Students must have completed sophomore year of undergraduate studies by the time of the RHE. Students must have strong interest in working in a rural community. 

Apply for a Summer 2020 Rural Health Experience!

Applications for summer 2020 experiences are now being accepted. A link to the application package is below. Applications must be received by Sunday, March 8, 2020 in order to be considered. 

Click HERE for the application package.
View the 2020 RHE BROCHURE.  See an example of a 

Questions? Contact:
Vicky Rhine, MPH
Assistant Director of External and Pipeline Projects | 815-395-5854.