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School of Medicine

Special Programs

Imi Ho‘ola/Post-Baccalaureate Program

This unit of the Department of Native Hawaiian Health is actively involved in the recruitment, admission, and retention of students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are interested in pursuing an MD degree. Please see Department of Native Hawaiian Health for more information.

Native Hawaiian Center of Excellence

This unit of the Department of Native Hawaiian Health enhances the performance of Native Hawaiian medical students, develops young faculty, teaches proper community based research methodology, and executes a recruitment program in middle and high schools and colleges for the health professions. Please see Department of Native Hawaiian Health for more information.

Hawai‘i/Pacific Basin Area Health Education Center (AHEC)

AHEC supports travel and housing costs for students to perform training in rural areas (neighbor islands, US-affiliated Pacific Islands) during all years of school, as well as supports distance learning activities (video teleconferencing), and two community based interdisciplinary training programs (the program formerly called Ke Ola, and assists with travel for the Quentin Burdick Rural Interdisciplinary Training Program). AHEC also performs ongoing research in which students are invited to participate. The research areas include health workforce needs in the Pacific, factors influential in increasing pursuit of health science careers, training providers and patients about healthy lifestyle changes, and health needs of rural communities.

Other AHEC activities include recruitment to health science careers for students of all ages, as well as assistance with applications, finding financial support, research experiences and community partnerships, as well as providing continuing education, community health education and expanding community capacity to create programs to improve health.

AHEC is a federally funded program through the Health Resources and Services Administration. The federal mandate is to improve the diversity, distribution and quality of the health professions workforce. The mission of AHEC: To improve the health of the underserved through education. Activities focus on five primary areas: (1) Health education and recruitment to health professions for students across the state from kindergarten through college; (2) Educating health professions students in rural and underserved areas, often in interdisciplinary teams; (3) Recruitment, retention and continuing education of practicing health professionals in medically underserved areas; (4) Providing community based and community driven health education in over a dozen community learning centers across the state; and (5) Providing video connectivity for health education, communication, and other health care services to rural and underserved areas across the state. Other programs with which AHEC administers programs are the NIH Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network (BRIN), NIH INBRE, NIH Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) programs, NIH National Library of Medicine and the Hawai‘i Department of Health, Healthy Hawaii Initiative.

Center on Aging

The Center on Aging was established by the UH Board of Regents in July 1988 to stimulate and coordinate gerontological activities on UH Manoa, to establish gerontology as an academic field at UH Manoa, and to promote collaboration between the UH and other organizations concerned with aging.

Center on Aging staff are involved in a number of research and training projects: exploring cultural variations in caregiving, help seeking, perceptions of chronic disease (e.g., cancer, dementia, and diabetes) and death and dying practices; tracking client and caregiver satisfaction with homecare services; coordinating specialized training and workshops in gerontology for local and international organizations; and developing and testing educational materials related to elder abuse and neglect, end-of-life care and decision making; and health promotion. These projects are being conducted in collaboration with a number of UH departments (e.g., the School of Law, the School of Social Work, and the College of Social Sciences) and community agencies (e.g., the Executive Office on Aging, county offices on aging, the Hawaiian Islands Hospice Organization, the St. Francis International Center for Healthcare Ethics, and Papa Ola Lokahi).

Honors and Awards

Alpha Omega Alpha is the honorary society for medical students.