Summer Externship in Dementia Care

Update: The 2020 summer externship was held virtually. We were glad to continue to offer this opportunity and enjoyed a very successful program! Please stay tuned for details on recruitment for 2021 and how the program will be offered.

Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute offers a summer externship for medical students who have completed their first year at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.

The externship provides broad exposure to medical, social and educational needs of patients and families; to current practice in the community; and to experiences that are not part of the current medical school curriculum. To date, twenty-two students have completed the externship.

A summer externship opportunity is available to one or two Med1 students enrolled at UW School of Medicine and Public Health. The student(s) will work with physician preceptors in dementia diagnostic clinics, primary care and neurology. Their focus will be on the geriatric population, specifically those with dementia, but will also include exposure to a wide range of older patients with chronic conditions.  Students will also spend time outside of clinics with physicians and other health care providers making nursing home rounds, home visits, attending caregiver support groups, and visiting adult day programs.

The goal of this innovative program is to increase the knowledge and skills of future health care providers to provide long-term, interdisciplinary care to patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and related dementias and to their families. At the completion of this program, students will be able to:  describe the diagnosis, treatment, and management of dementia and mild cognitive impairment; recognize the roles of a multidisciplinary team in dementia care; identify common concerns of the person living with dementia and their families/caregiver(s); discuss current memory research studies; and identify community resources to support persons living with dementia and their families to live in their homes for as long as possible.

Date/Time:  Full time (M-F), Summer 2020. Students may do 4 or 8 consecutive weeks during the timeframe of Monday, June 1 through Friday, July 31, 2020.

Slots available: 1-2

Locations: Students will travel between Madison, Milwaukee, Richland Center and/or Rhinelander, spending 1 to 3 weeks in each location, for a total of 4 or 8 weeks.

A formal daily schedule will be provided to each student.

Stipend:  $400/week

Housing:  Housing provided during weeks outside of Madison.

Transportation & Meals:  Student must provide own transportation and meals.

Who can apply:  Med1 students at UW School of Medicine and Public Health

Application deadline is April 3, 2020. Apply today!

Questions? Please contact Bonnie Nuttkinson for more information. The externship is partially funded by a grant from the Wisconsin Northern Highland AHEC and Scenic Rivers AHEC.

Student Testimonial:

“I really enjoyed the opportunity for firsthand, hands-on learning in a clinical setting. Each of the providers were great teachers and provided a very open atmosphere for questions, comments, and suggestions. I felt like I was made more aware of what physicians and psychologists and social workers are doing to diagnose and treat Alzheimer’s at many of the sites around the state. Additionally, I found it really valuable to learn about the community programs that help individuals and families.”