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M.D. Program

M.D. Program

FAQs for prospective students:

Do I take all the same courses as non-PRIME students?

Yes, Rural-PRIME students need to meet all medical school requirements and are required to take all basic science and clinical courses.

What additional courses do I need to take during medical school?

Medical students in Rural-PRIME take the same required medical school classes as their classmates with some contextualized to rural health. In addition, Rural-PRIME students are offered specialized weekly seminar courses focusing on rural health, individual and group advising, advanced training in telemedicine, skills and procedure sessions in the Center for Virtual Care, extra shadowing opportunities with rural mentors and assistance with planning for their master's program.

Rural-PRIME students are taught in their Doctoring small groups by rural physicians and are also paired with community physicians for their Preceptorship visits.  Core experiences in Rural-PRIME focus on rural health, public health, health informatics and disadvantaged populations.  Students spend approximately six months of their third year in rural communities. Rural-PRIME students tend to be interested in various disadvantaged populations, Latino health, and /or wilderness medicine. Students will have additional opportunities to explore their specific area of interest with electives during their fourth year.

Are Rural-PRIME students required to complete a Master's degree?

Rural-PRIME students are encouraged to complete a master's degree between their third and fourth year of medical school.  UC Davis offers a variety of master's degrees to choose from.  The Master in Public Health and the Health Informatics Program are both popular options with our students.  We will work individually with students to address their specific career goals when planning for a master's program.  These programs and others can be found at: 

Rural-PRIME students may  decide to complete their masters program outside of UC Davis. We currently have students completing their M.P.H degree at U.C. Berkeley and Johns Hopkins.  Students may also elect to complete a research program, such as our Clinical and Translational Science Centers’ T32 Pre-Doctoral Clinical Research Training Program: 

Are Rural-PRIME students entitled to any additional financial grants or loans?

Additional financial assistance may be available.  Rural-PRIME is working to expand the monies available to PRIME students, particularly to cover the extra year of training.

How do I apply to Rural-PRIME?

All applicants must apply to the UC Davis School of Medicine through American Medical College Application Service by October 1.  A select number of applicants will be asked to submit a secondary application.  Interest in Rural-PRIME is currently indicated on the secondary application.  Additional information will be required for Rural-PRIME.

Your file will be screened and considered for the M.D. and Rural-PRIME program.

When will interviews for Rural-PRIME be scheduled?

Your interview with Rural-PRIME will be scheduled following your School of Medicine interview and be conducted by video conference.

What is the acceptance process?

After your Rural-PRIME interview, your application file will be reviewed by the Rural-PRIME selection subcomittee.  Your application will be ranked based on the strength of the rural aspects of your application: rural experience, knowledge and interests.

Your file will also be reviewed by the M.D. Program selection subcommittee.  Your application will be ranked based on the strength of your general application: leadership, clinical experience, research, community service and motivation to do medicine.

Our Admissions Dean will make the final admission decision.  To be accepted into Rural-PRIME, your application must be approved by the Rural-PRIME selection subcommittee and the M.D. Program selection subcommittee.  If your application is ranked highly for the M.D. Program but NOT for Rural-PRIME, you may be offered an acceptance by the M.D. Program but NOT for Rural-PRIME.  However, you cannot be accepted into Rural-PRIME if the M.D. Program selection subcommittee rejects your application.

If an applicant is offered a position in Rural-PRIME, he/she has until the May 15th deadline to accept the Rural-PRIME offer, accept the M.D. offer or decline.

How many students are admitted into Rural-PRIME?

Twelve students are selected each admissions cycle to join Rural-PRIME.