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Medical Students Receive 2019 Illinois Rural Health Association Student of Excellence Awards

Nicole Blumenstein, Hana Hinkle And William Tian 2019 IRHA Awards

Nicole Blumenstein, Dr. Hana Hinkle and William Tian attended the 2019 Illinois Rural Health Association's annual conference. Blumenstein and Tian received Student of Excellence Awards.

University of Illinois College of Medicine Rockford medical students Nicole Blumenstein and William Tian were recently presented the 2019 Illinois Rural Health Association's Student of Excellence Awards at IRHA's annual conference in Champaign, Illinois.

Blumenstein and Tian, both third-year medical students, have been working on research projects since their first year with UICOMR faculty member Hana Hinkle, PhD, associate director of the National Center for Rural Health Professions and research assistant professor. As Dr. Hinkle noted in her nomination of the students, "Nicole and William are not from rural backgrounds, but their passion for advocating and serving underserved rural populations has become part of their core mission as medical students."

Their work focusing on acute care transitions among Critical Access Hospitals has been published by the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network and Northern Illinois University Center for Governmental Students in a white paper that was presented to federal legislators in Washington, D.C.  In addition, they have also had their research accepted as a poster presentation for the upcoming American Public Health Association annual meeting and they are working to publish their first manuscript on the topic.