Alfa Donates $1.8 Million For Scholarship Fund To Train Rural Physicians
Alfa Insurance and the Alabama Farmers Federation have provided $1.8 million to create an endowed scholarship fund for medical students at the University of Alabama School of Medicine who plan to serve rural communities.”One of our state’s critical health care needs is more physicians in rural areas,” said Carol Z. Garrison, president of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). “Alfa Companies have recognized this need and provided a most generous gift so that we can begin to address this problem.”Students who are enrolled in the Rural Medical Scholars Program (RMSP) and demonstrate financial need are eligible to apply to the Alfa Rural Medical Scholars Program Endowed Loan Fund. The loan is forgiven for students who, upon finishing their training, serve five years in a rural setting.Alfa Farmers President Jerry Newby said the scholarship fund will give students from rural areas the opportunity to return to their hometowns to practice medicine.”Almost 60 years ago, the Alabama Farmers Federation founded Alfa Insurance to help better serve rural communities. By helping educate rural physicians, our company is continuing its legacy of service to farmers and rural Alabamians,” Newby said. “The bright young men and women who participate in the Rural Medical Scholars Program will help improve the health of rural people, and by establishing practices in small towns, they will contribute to the economic health of the entire state.”Dr. John Wheat, director and founder of the RMSP, said Alfa’s donation will help improve the quality of life for farm families and rural Alabamians. “Future rural physicians, such as Terry James of Winston County (who is attending medical school on an Alfa scholarship), are one component in the overall plan needed to make rural and farm life safe, secure and rewarding to current and future farm families,” he said.