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Pipeline Activities

Kids participate in the 2014 Survivor Aroostook in Presque Isle as part of the Maine Area Health Education Center Pipeline ProgramsHealthcare facilities in rural areas face ongoing challenges in the recruitment and retention of trained health care workers. Research has shown that health care profession students from rural areas are most likely to return to rural areas to practice after their training.

The Maine AHEC Network develops and implements pipeline programs that engage high school and college students from rural and underserved areas so they are informed about health careers, know what they need to do to enter a health career training program and develop strategies to ensure their success.

Every year more than 1,000 high school and middle school students engage in AHEC sponsored job shadows, summer camps, career fairs and other pipeline activities.

All Pipeline Programs

Selected Program Descriptions and Links:

Literature on Making the Case for Health Workforce Pipeline Programs


Clinical Education

Clinical Education internOverview

Supporting the recruitment and retention of rural primary care providers is a focus of the Maine AHEC Network. Evidence-based strategies include providing health profession students with positive clinical experiences in rural communities and nurturing health professions students from rural communities who are most likely to return to those communities to practice.

Community Health Rotation for UNE College of Osteopathic Medicine Students

The Maine AHEC Network coordinates the selective mandatory four-week Maine Community Health Rotation (CHR) for third year UNE COM medical students. With more than 60 preceptors (clinical physician-educators) in Maine, students enhance their knowledge and exposure to the unique and exciting challenges of practicing primary care, especially in rural underserved communities. 

Enhanced Community Health Rotation Program

The Maine AHEC Network, in collaboration with the Northern Maine AHEC and Western Maine AHEC has developed an “enhanced” community health rotation to attract students interested in rural health and primary care and create a rich experience that will increase the chances that students will make the decision to practice in rural Maine. 

AHEC Centers

Our AHEC Centers in Bangor and Farmington also coordinate rotations for many other health professionals including physician’s assistants, dentists, nurses and medical assistants among others. As the Maine AHEC Network, we serve not only UNE’s many health professions’ colleges but also many of the other New England health profession and medical colleges.


Our AHEC preceptors are one of our most precious resources. They share their knowledge, their time, their personal experiences and their lives with all of our students.

If you would like to become a preceptor or your site would like to discuss becoming a community health rotation site, do not hesitate to contact Maryfrances Smith at (207) 221-4461 or

Resources For Preceptors