AHEC Scholars

Area Health Education Center (AHEC) Scholarship Program

The Hilo Medical Center Foundation (HMCF) serves as the Hawaii Island Area Health Education Center (AHEC) and works to enhance access to quality health care, particularly primary and preventive care, by improving the supply and distribution of healthcare professionals via strategic partnerships with academic programs, communities and professional organizations.

As one of the organization’s most robust programs, AHEC Scholars equips high-achieving health professions students with the experience and knowledge to best serve rural and underserved communities across Hawaii Island. Funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration, the AHEC Scholars curriculum prepares our students for evidence-based and culturally competent best practices in their fields. These skills and certifications make them top candidates your community needs.

Core topic areas covered in the curriculum include:

  • Inter-professional education
  • Behavioral health integration
  • Social determinants of health
  • Cultural competency
  • Practice transformation
  • Current and emerging health issues


The program is open to all students in Hawaii enrolled in healthcare and pre-healthcare certificate and degree programs at the undergraduate level or higher. Students commit to the program for 2 years.
This program is provided at no cost to participating scholars.


AHEC Activities

  • Educating Health Professions Students
    • In the rural and underserved areas of Hawaii Island, often in multidisciplinary Teams
  • Educating and Recruiting
    • Students to health professions from K-12 schools
  • Providing Community based and community driven education
    • For all underserved groups on Hawaii Island
  • Recruiting Health Care Professionals
    • To rural and underserved areas and providing continuing educational opportunities

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