The Minority Medical Mentoring Program (MMMP)

The Minority Medical Mentoring Program (MMMP) began in the Fall of 2005 as an internship for under-represented minority students who had an interest in practicing medicine. This program is a collaborative effort of the Asheville-Buncombe Institute for Parity Achievement (ABIPA), the Western Carolina Medical Society (WCMS), the Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) and Mission Hospital. Today, the program pairs minority high school seniors that have a serious interest in becoming a physician with physicians, pharmacist and dentists practicing in Buncombe County.

The MMMP Program is open to students in public and private high schools that are participating in a school-sanctioned internship for course credit. The program provides a minimum of 135 credit hours for one semester.

Students will participate in weekly rotations and experiences with physicians or dentists, other health care practitioners or administrators in private practices, clinical and hospital settings, didactics, health science library, Grand Rounds and several other forums that provide a quality learning experience. The program begins with a one week orientation that addresses Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), professional ethics, workplace etiquette & protocols, confidentiality, and personal attitude and presentation.

We are extremely thankful for the time and efforts of the internship physicians, dentists, administrators and other practitioners that provide leadership for the internship experience. The MMMP Program allows students to have hands on and minds on experience because of the aforementioned group of dedicated individuals. Because of the unique opportunities that this program provides, it is important that we recruit students that are:

  • excited about medicine and dentistry
  • in need of little to no supervision
  • mature and focused
  • highly responsible and independent
  • good personality and attitude

This program is important because of the 600 physicians actively practicing medicine in Buncombe County, only one percent is African American and one percent is Latino. As discussed in the 2004 release of the Sullivan Report, Missing Persons: Minorities in the Health Professions, there is a need to increase minority health care professional representation to promote culturally congruent care. We hope that by building relationships with these students in the medical community that they will eventually come back to practice in western North Carolina.

Rotations

Students are scheduled weekly rotations with participating physicians or dentists, other health care practitioners or administrators in private practices, clinical and hospital settings, didactics, health science library, nursing home rounds, observing procedures, Grand Rounds and several other forums that provide a quality learning experience. In addition, students may also use internship hours to participate in MAHEC's Family Medicine Resident didactics, Asheville-Buncombe Institute of Parity Achievement (ABIPA) Parity Action Teams, relevant community activities and academic enrichment programs and activities.

Student Rotation Schedules

Students wishing to participate in MMMP should enroll in their school's internship program for the last period of the day and last lunch. This would enable the student to have a rotation scheduled from approximately 2:00 - 4:30 pm. There is an early morning hospital rounds rotation that student should expect to participate in.

Liability Insurance

Students enrolled in the internship program are covered under their school's liability coverage. A copy of this policy must be obtained before beginning the program.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Underrepresented Racial and Ethnic Minority
  • Strong desire to pursue a career as a physician or dentist
  • Minimum weighted grade point average of 3.0
  • Resident of Buncombe County
  • Good moral character, as demonstrated and based on teacher recommendation.
  • Community involvement, as demonstrated through active involvement in community service and organizational membership
  • Must have personal transportation