JACKSON – TJ McIntosh, a Wren native and junior at Mississippi College; Sara Lynn Sligh, an Amory native and junior at the Mississippi University for Women; and Katherine Morgan, a Hatley native and junior at the University of Mississippi, were recently selected to participate in the undergraduate portion of the Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program (MRPSP). McIntosh is the son of Sylvia McIntosh and the late Torrance McIntosh, Sligh is the daughter of Adrian and Missy Sligh, and Morgan is the daughter of Jimmie and Denice Morgan.

Created in 2007, MRPSP identifies college sophomores and juniors who demonstrate the necessary commitment and academic achievement to become competent, well-trained rural primary care physicians in Mississippi. The program offers undergraduate academic enrichment and a clinical experience in a rural setting. Upon completion of all medical school admissions requirements, the student can use the scholarship at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine or William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine.

During medical school, each MRPSP scholar may receive $30,000 per year based on available funding. Consistent legislative support of MRPSP translates to 61 medical students receiving a total of $1,830,000 to support their education this fall.

In addition to the legislative support, three privately funded scholarships are also awarded from the Madison Charitable Foundation, the Selby and Richard McRae Foundation and the Medical Assurance Company of Mississippi. Additional benefits include personalized mentoring from practicing rural physicians and academic support.

Upon completion of medical school, MRPSP scholars must enter a residency program in one of five primary care specialties – family medicine, general internal medicine, pediatrics, medicine-pediatrics or obstetrics/gynecology. The MRPSP Scholar must provide four years of service in a clinic-based practice in an approved Mississippi community of 15,000 or fewer population located more than 20 miles from a medically served area.

The MRPSP provides a means for rural Mississippi students to earn a seat in medical school, receive mentoring during the medical school application process, earn a $120,000 medical school scholarship in return for four years of service and learn the art of healing from practicing rural physicians.

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