Health disparity in the U.S. is a problem among certain population groups, such as South Dakota’s rural areas and Native American communities. To help bridge the health care gap, the Rise-Up program offers internships to young men and women from underserved areas who are interested in health care careers. The idea is that they will return and serve their home communities.
The formal name for the program is Maternal and Child Health Careers: Research Initiatives for Student Enhancement Undergraduate Program (MCHC/RISE-UP). It was launched in 2012 with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine and its Center for Disabilities is one of three training sites along John Hopkins University and the University of Southern California. The Kennedy Krieger Institute, which is affiliated with John Hopkins, disburses funds to the partner institutions to facilitate the Rise-Up programs.
Interest in the program at USD has grown. In 2012 there were 18 eligible applicants and 8 internships awarded. This year there were 65 eligible applicants and 10 internships awarded. The ten-week summer Rise-Up summer internship program began last month.
Tyler Hemmingson, Rise-Up coordinator and recruitment specialist at USD, joined Dakota Midday and discussed the program.