Years 1 and 2

Rural Learning Experience (RuLE)

In June, 2010, the FSU College of Medicine Department of Family Medicine and Rural Health, in partnership with Student Affairs and with funding support from the Florida Blue Foundation, launched a program designed to expose incoming first year medical students to rural communities and health care issues. Originally called the Rural Educational Orientation Program (REOP), this 4 to 6 hour community visit enables students to discover, learn about and analyze the health care opportunities and challenges of nearby rural communities and their citizens.

Since its inception, over 500 students have visited rural communities within the counties of Jackson, Gadsden, Madison, Jefferson, Taylor, Calhoun, Liberty, Holmes, Suwannee, and Wakulla in Florida and Grady County in Georgia. While in these communities, students met with a wide range of community organizations and health care professionals in order to obtain first-hand knowledge regarding the various opportunities, challenges and possibilities of providing health care to rural and underserved populations. 

Because of the tremndous success of this program, in 2014 it was incorporated into the Vision and Values portion of the first year medical school curriculum and the name of the program changed to the Rural Learning Experience (RuLE).