Paul D. Coverdell Peace Corps Fellows

Graduate Nursing Education Primary Care Scholars (GNEPCS) are current nurse practitioner students planning to provide primary care in one of Alabama’s rural-designated counties upon graduation. Primary Care Scholars enroll in the same courses as their classmates but receive mentoring, individualized content relative to rural health issues, preceptorships with rural health providers and other opportunities for professional and leadership development. 

Fact Sheets


Current MSN Students    |    Potential Students

About Primary Care Scholars


GNEPCS focuses on educating more advanced practice nurses to work in underserved areas, and on building networks connecting Alabama’s existing rural health care providers with one another and UAB—to reach more Alabamians needing primary care. 

It creates a pipeline of nurses from rural Alabama counties for recruitment into primary care nurse practitioner programs as Primary Care Scholars.

The primary care nurse practitioner tracks eligible for participation are:

  • NP Family
  • NP Pediatric Primary Care
  • NP Acute/Dual Primary Pediatric
  • NP Adult-Gero Primary Care
  • NP Adult-Gero/Woman’s Health

A central theme driving GNEPCS is generating and sharing new knowledge. It is structured to produce new curricula for teaching students, develop best practice models, and establish an annual summit for health care providers across the state to learn and share approaches for helping the medically underserved.  

Primary Care Scholars Will


  • Gain clinical experience in rural health settings in Alabama with primary care providers
  • Participate in monthly mentoring sessions providing opportunities to share clinical experiences, discuss timely topics in rural health, and learn from guest speakers
  • Be encouraged to grow as advocates for improving access and patient care in rural Alabama by participating in networking opportunities and engaging at the local, state and national level in professional organizations dedicated to improving health for rural and underserved populations
  • Have access to content specifically created by expert practitioners for primary care providers practicing in rural Alabama
  • Participate in an annual educational summit, which includes face-to-face networking, hands-on skills training and learning from experts in the field. 



  • Establish primary care clinical training sites in Alabama’s rural and underserved areas where scholars gain hands-on-experience working with exceptional rural providers
  • Support scholars and other rural primary care nurse practitioners through a telephone-based consultation service utilizing the expertise of the School’s faculty nurse practitioners
  • Provide ongoing professional development to meet the needs of rural primary care providers, preceptors and scholars though distance-accessible activities, including webinars
  • Create primary care nurse practitioner leaders in rural health for Alabama and beyond

Admission Requirements 


To apply you must first be admitted to one of the primary care NP tracks in the School’s MSN program. MSN program admission requirements:

  • Bachelor of Science (or higher degree) in Nursing from an accredited school, equivalent to the one offered by the UAB School of Nursing
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) either cumulatively or on the last 60 semester credit hours. 
  • Three letters of professional reference attesting to the applicant’s potential for graduate study 
  • Official copy of all transcripts from previous educational programs

*Individual specialty tracks may have additional experience requirements, please review the specialty track application information listed on the School’s website, 

DNP Orientation


DNP Orientation

This two-day event provides the perfect opportunity to the newly admitted student to learn about their matriculation plan for their doctoral studies, meet fellow students, and engage with faculty and clinical mentors. Students receive exposure to course content by DNP faculty, and have the opportunity to share early ideas for their clinical practice immersion experience and scholarly project.

DNP Intensive


DNP Intensive

The DNP Intensive is a culminating experience that affords students and faculty the opportunity to network, showcase their scholarly work, and interact with national and international speakers. This three-day event brings all three campuses together to engage in scholarly conversations about the impact of translational science as a practice doctorate.

DNP Hooding


DNP Hooding

Recognizing doctoral graduates for the completion of their scholarly work, the UAB School of Nursing DNP Hooding is a most auspicious ceremony. Graduates, their family, friends, faculty, our Dean, and Associate Deans, gather to celebrate your completion of the Doctor of Nursing Practice program.


For application process information:

Karmie Johnson
Program Manager
205.975.3527  |


Empowering Midwives in Rwanda

pandora group shot 2nd from right front row resized

UAB School of Nursing graduate, Pandora Hardtman, pictured above (second from the right on the front row) with nurse midwives of the Rwanda Midwifery Association, is working to improve the education and power of nurse midwives in Rwanda.  Also pictured in the photo is the Rwandan Minister of Health Dr. Anita Asiimwe (fourth from the right on the front row), the Chief Nursing Officer for Rwanda Mary Murebwayire (third from the right on the front row), and three UNFPA Rwanda representatives (who were donors). 

Since graduating with her Doctorate in Nursing Practice in 2012, Dr. Hardtman has been working on a Human Resources for Health Project to Strengthen Midwifery Education in Rwanda.  In her role there, she has worked closely with the Rwandan Ministry of Health and the Rwandan Midwifery Association, and other partners on a variety of initiatives, including the first ever celebration of the International Day of the Midwife which was a huge success.  Please enjoy further reading by reading Dr. Hardtman's blog post about this important event below.

May 5 2013 marks the first year since its inception in July 2011 that the Rwandan Association of Midwives celebrated the International Day of the Midwife. The celebration of IDM with over 150 in attendance was filled with song, traditional dance and information followed by luncheon and the fellowship of midwives, student midwives and midwifery supporters from all over the country at the Hilltop Hotel.  The IDM program launched the RAM's endorsement of the Respectful Maternity Care (RMC) campaign of the White Ribbon Alliance.  Rwandan midwives showed their bravery and commitment to improvements in care by providing supportive  anecdotal and observed statements for each of the six categories of disrespect and abuse in maternity care highlighted by the RMC campaign.  The stories told by a midwife in the local kinyarwanda language made it impossible for the listeners to ignore the gravity of the problem and committed all within hearing to positive action.  The keynote speech of  Minister of  State Health Dr. Anita Asiimwe reiterated the need for more midwives to continue to provide high quality services and to provide respectful, dignified, accountable care. 

The founding members of the RAM were SisterMary Murebwayire, Ministry of Health Chief Nursing Officer and Asteria Karasira.  Sister Mary's decades of work aimed at reconstructing Nursing and Midwifery services in the post- genocide Rwanda were honored by her selection as the recipient of the first annual Rwandan Midwife of the Year award. The event garnered the attention of the local print and television media who turned out in force to record the landmark midwifery event.

The history of Midwifery in Rwanda illustrates the transition from Traditional Birth Attendants to a system of fully trained professional midwives. In 1949, Kabgayi Catholic mission started to train a few assistant midwives.  As birth moved into facilities , the midwifery demand increased.  In 1997, the Government of Rwanda approved studies at Kigali Health Institute for midwifery coursework which continue to this day.  In 2007, five additional schools of nursing and midwifery were opened at Kagbayi, Kibungo, Byumba, Rawmagana and Nyagatare.  The National Council for Nurses and Midwives reports over 250 Midwives successfully completing licensing examination and becoming eligible to enter the National Registry  of Nurses and Midwives this year to close the midwifery workforce gap.  Final year midwifery students from these Schools of Nursing and Midwifery  proudly joined in IDM festivities marking the future leadership potential and promise of the profession of Midwifery in Rwanda.  The memorable day ended with the sounds of the ICTC song 'I love being a Midwife' as taught by the Human Resources for Health Rwanda Midwifery Team. 

The event was supported with funding from the UNFPA as they continue to 'Invest in Midwives'.

The Rwanda Association of Midwives remains in its infancy and hopes to become a full member of the ICM in the near future. For more information or to support its efforts contact


uab student nurses organizing clinic resized for new site

Opportunities for Global Service in Health

There are many ways to use what you know in health care to serve families of low resources, both in the US and abroad.
Please click on the links below to find ways in which you can use your passion for global health to enhance your training and/or advance your career.  If you hear of opportunities for nursing students or alumni not listed here, OR if you wish to be added to our e-mailing list, please contact us and let us know! 

Partners In Health offers job opportunities around the world for adventurous health care professionals. 

The Peace Corps offers a unique experience to make a difference around the world.

Doctors Without Borders needs qualified nurses for a challenging and rewarding career.

Projects Abroad offers internships in nursing and health care all over the world.

Jhpiego works in developing countries to train healthcare professionals in modern reproductive health care.

United Planet is a community of people who care which trancends borders.  Nurses needed!

Connect, serve and change lives with Partners of the Americas.

Cross Cultural Solutions offers exciting and safe ways to serve abroad.

InterExchange provides international adventures in health care service around the world.

Be a nurse in the U.S. Navy and see the world.

Global Research Nurses work towards improving health worldwide through clinical research abroad.

Work with Resource Exchange International to help build the healthcare workforce in other nations.

Global Health Fellows Program II of USAID is seeking professionals at any stage to serve abroad.
Volunteer in foreign assignments matched to you with Volunteer BaseCamp. offers opportunities to do medical work in three countries: Ghana, Thailand and Costa Rica.
Public Health Online is a career guide website which offers information on public health nursing career prospects.

While it is our goal to make this type of information available to you, UAB SON does not endorse any specific organization, company or program.