NCFM Testimonials

Michael Welch, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Surgical OB--Northwest Montana Health Services--Wolf Point and Poplar, Montana

Rush University--Rush Medical College

NCFM Wray Rural Training Program Class of 2021

Why did I choose NCFM?:

I knew I eventually wanted to have as broad of a spectrum of practice as possible. It was clearly evident during the residency interviewing process that NCFM was a cut above the rest. in terms of this type of training, particularly the Wray rural track. It was the smallest possible residency program at the smallest possible hospital that still offered the volume you need to develop competence and confidence as a new physician. 

How was my experience at NCFM?:

Absolutely fantastic. Intern year was intense, but manageable. The leadership of senior residents and dedicated faculty were combined into a very family-like atmosphere that cultivated learning, and pushed us to develop as many skills as possible. Particularly in my time in Wray, I was able to practice autonomously and independently (under supervision) in a way that set me up to hit the ground running at my first job. 

How has the training helped me in the real world?:

I'm currently the only full-time physician on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation in Northeast Montana. I practice full spectrum medicine including surgical obstetrics, emergency medicine, trauma, endoscopy, and abdominal surgeries. My training at NCFM gave my all the technical skills and more importantly: the mindset that it takes to perform well and succeed in many high-stress situations as an independent provider. 

My colleagues and other people I work with have vocalized that it is evident that my training has developed me into a very competent, well-rounded physician that practices medicine on a higher plain than other providers. 

Daniel Dyer, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Surgical OB-- Kudjip Nazarene General Hospital--Papua New Guinea

Creighton University School of Medicine – Class of 2017

NCFM Core Program Class of 2020

I was drawn to NCFM by the passion of the faculty and residents to provide medical care to those most in need, particularly through becoming excellent family physicians who could care for just about anything. I was constantly challenged by these incredible people to become a better doctor, but also a better person. The leadership, AMC (Advanced Maternity Care w/ C-Section training) and global health tracks allowed me to gain additional skills, while developing a solid base in the hospital and clinic.

My training at NCFM allowed me to jump right in here at Kudjip, a referral hospital that serves a province of about 350,000 people in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. A call shift might involve splinting a fracture, using POCUS to diagnose an ectopic, doing an LP on a kid with meningitis, delivering a baby by vacuum or CS, draining an abscess, as well as treating heart failure, diarrhea, pneumonia, malnutrition, etc. NCFM provided me with a great basis to be able to work as a doctor here. I am so thankful for the training that I received so that I can do the work I was called to do.  

Eric Webster, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician -- Bay Clinic Inc.—Pahoa, Hawaii

University of Colorado School of Medicine and Rural Track—Class of 2018

NCFM Sterling Rural Training Program Class of 2021

I lived many years in the rural mountain town of Gunnison, CO working odd jobs as a ski instructor, law enforcement and for United airlines. I dreamt of a livelihood helping others while having a high degree of autonomy and the ability to live in a cool place. In my travels with the airlines, and transporting inmates to their medical visits with the local rural FM doc, I witnessed GPs practicing many exciting types of medicine around the world. I went back to school for a BS Biochem to get into med school with the sole purpose of becoming a rural FM doc because that is the coolest specialty (wouldn't want to be a retinal surgeon when a woman is about to deliver or a guy has CP on a plane; wouldn't want to be an ED doc if your brother has diabetes, etc). I went to med school at the University of Colorado SOM. The rural track, headed by the esteemed Dr. Mark Deutchman (look him up), guided me to NCFM as a most desirable place to train. After seeing how friendly the people at NCFM were, and the excellent medicine that they practiced, I knew this was the place for me to get where I wanted to be. I ranked the Sterling RTT highly because of the well supported autonomy, hospital/ED/OB/procedural focus, and rural location. Training as a broad spectrum FM doc with the Sterling RTT - NCFM, one of the top FM residencies in the U.S. and therefore the world, has allowed me to meet a huge need while earning a good living and playing anywhere I want in the world. Straight out of residency I felt highly sought after by employers from VA to Saipan. I received training through the Sterling RTT that made me feel competent to work in clinic, ED, OB, and inpatient hospital settings (indeed I was well supported while moonlighting in all of these settings except OB prior to my graduation). I currently practice outpatient medicine on the Big Island, HI. I am available to speak with if I can help by contacting NCFM admin and requesting my info.  

Laura Gibbons, DO, MS

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Obstetrics -- Wind River Reservation, Lander WY 

Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine

NCFM Core Program Class of 2021

When I started my third year of medical school, I had no idea what I wanted to do, but I was firmly against family medicine. As it turns out I was woefully ignorant of what family medicine could be! I was lucky enough to do a longitudinal curriculum at NCFM for my entire third year. This was a wonderful experience and really showed me the depth and scope of FM. After my second month of third year I knew that I couldn't have been more wrong, FM was EXACTLY where I belonged. During my sub-I's and interviews I never found another program that lived up to the experiences I had at NCFM as a student. I was fortunate enough to match with them and I am still very grateful for this. 

I have now started my job working for the Arapahoe Tribe on the Wind River Reservation outside of Lander WY. This position truly is full spectrum, with all ages, OB, many chronic illnesses, limited resources/specialists, unbelievable social struggles, frequent office procedures, nursing home, and in-patient care, including L&D, NICU, peds, med/surg and ICU. While practicing full scope medicine like this is often humbling, and always a team effort, I feel that my training at NCFM has set me up for sucess. Training at NCFM exposed me to broad patient populations in terms of age, ethnicity, education, illnesses, and medical literacy. I also became comfortable in many settings, clinic, hospital, nursing home, and even home visits. All of these experiences have been invaluable as I navigate my new roll as rural attending physician. 

I also love how much teaching I was able to do as a resident at NCFM, I was one of the academic chief residents, which meant I was able to help continue to mold the curriculum to residents needs/interests. NCFM also always has third and fourth year students present, some in longitudinal programs. I really enjoyed this throughout my residency. I believe as physicians we are constantly in a 'teaching' position for our patients, our nurses, and entire clinic staff. These skills are fundamental to making changes in our patients lives/health. I also plan to continue to teach future generations of physicians throughout my career and I am happy I was able to develop these skills in residency. 

Bottom line NCFM is a safe, structured (well not always on L&D, since no matter how hard we try, we just can't seem to keep those pregnant woman on a schedule), supportive environment to grow into a competent, confident, and compassionate physician. I am very happy here in WY and so grateful that NCFM enabled this dream job to come to fruition.  

Zachary Gastelum, MD

Via Christi International Family Medicine Fellowship - Wichita, Kansas

University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson

NCFM Sunrise Program - Class of 2021

I chose NCFM- Sunrise Program for my residency training for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, NCFM provides full-spectrum training that gave me a solid foundation to practice medicine in any setting. I witnessed this during my first time working independently outside of residency when I was covering a critical access hospital in rural Kansas. Here I was expected to work in the ER, inpatient hospital wing, outpatient clinic, and long-term senior living unit. NCFM prepared me to approach this opportunity with a degree of confidence and comfort. NCFM also prepared me extremely well in the field of obstetrics in which I have gained competence in performing both vaginal and operative vaginal deliveries, cesarean deliveries, obstetrical ultrasound, and in managing common obstetric complications. Because I hope to work internationally in underserved settings long-term, this obstetric experience is invaluable.

In addition to these core components of the program, I was able to develop my interests in global health through the global health track, minority and refugee health through my outpatient clinic at Sunrise Community Health (a federally qualified health center), and leadership though the robust leadership curriculum and various other residency opportunities. I am especially grateful to NCFM for its flexibility and encouragement in allowing me to pursue my personal interests such as my participation in a cross-cultural elective working with Indian Health Service in Arizona and the tailoring of my elective rotations to improve my procedural skills and knowledge of maternal fetal medicine. In addition, being situated at a community hospital, NCFM enables close connections between residents and specialist providers and nursing staff which leads to a very collegial environment centered on teamwork and genuine interaction. Finally, NCFM provides a very community-centered atmosphere among the residents and faculty which allowed me to form strong relationships with my co-residents and attendings which proved invaluable in complementing the grueling work of residency training. 

Upon graduating from NCFM I completed the Via Christi International Family Medicine Fellowship where I learned additional skills in ultrasound, burn care, tropical medicine, orthopedic and trauma management, spinal anesthesia, and neonatal intensive care. Thereafter, I was able to use and expound upon the invaluable experience I gained at NCFM and Via Christi while working as a full-spectrum Family Medicine physician at a critical access hospital in Honduras for 5 months.

Thanks to Mission Doctors Association, my current employer, I now have the opportunity to care for our sisters and brothers in Santa Clotilde, Peru. As a volunteer at a rural hospital in the Peruvian Amazon working alongside both Peruvian and ex-pat healthcare professionals, I care for patients with diverse pathology including common chronic conditions and unique tropical diseases. Every day I recognize the importance of and am grateful for the training I received at NCFM. It has been instrumental in allowing me to approach each patient and challenge with a desire to learn, a degree of medical confidence, a secure understanding of my own limitations, a holistic and cross-cultural mindset, and a sense of personal comfort.

I would recommend NCFM, and especially Sunrise, to any future physician who desires a strong foundation in full-spectrum Family Medicine with Obstetrics training, a setting in which one feels vital to the operations of the hospital and the health of the community, an opportunity to work with a diverse and underserved patient population including immigrants and refugees, and the ability to tailor one's training to one's future goals.

Briana Money, DO 

Full-Spectrum Faculty Physician with Obstetrics--NCFM

Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine and ROME graduate

NCFM Core Program - Class of 2020

My name is Briana Money and I’m a former ROME student, class of 2017. I loved my time at TCOM and all the extra training I received in the rural program. I spent my family medicine months in Eagle Lake, where I really got to see what rural family docs can do! No specialists in town, no big university hospitals, just you, your colleagues and your skills. Of course there are resources, but not as easily accessed as in a big city. What I couldn’t quite fathom was finding a residency program that had similar goals to our rural program. It’s hard enough to narrow down the massive list of residency options, but when you also have specific things you want from training, it can seem even more overwhelming. 

North Colorado Family Medicine Residency met and exceeded all my expectations. ROME prepared me so well to step into the role of intern at an established, well-respected program. NCFM is an unopposed program at North Colorado Medical Center in Greeley, Colorado. Our program focuses on training residents in everything from surgical obstetrics to refugee health to nursing home care and everything in between. When you’re on the interview trail for family medicine programs, the phrase “full spectrum training” and its variations seems to appear in every program’s description. Here at NCFM, that description could not be more true. We have tons of OB exposure, and because there are no OB/Gyn residents, we manage everything with full support from the OB physician group in the hospital. If you want training in c- sections, NCFM has an Advanced Maternity Care track that graduates residents with typically over 140 c-sections, and some even get closer to 200! This kind of dedication to its residents is what makes NCFM stand apart from the crowd. 

The program has several other optional tracks that allow residents to tailor their training to meet their goals. Global health, sports medicine, leadership, and even a hospitalist track let us gain more exposure in the specific aspects of family medicine that interest us. I personally was involved in the leadership track and also attended other meetings for the global health and maternity care tracks. What’s great is that YOU get to decide. You can pick and choose what’s best for you, what meets your goals. Another important thing for me is excellent procedure training. From day one I was able to do my own procedures on my own clinic patients (with supervision, of course)! Everything from birth control implants/IUDs to toenail removal to nasolaryngoscopy, our clinics are ready for anything! 

I originally wrote this in 2017, and since then I have graduated from NCFM and started my career as a faculty member with the program! I am so excited to get to stay on and help teach residents and medical students. I think that’s something really great about this program - from day one as an intern there are almost always students around. This means we have tons of opportunities to teach (and learn)! Aside from Sub-Is, we also have about 8 Rocky Vista University students who spend the majority of their third year at our hospital and with community doctors in Greeley. I find this is just another way that our program is a bit different from others - it’s a community hospital with the feel of a teaching hospital! 

These are just some of the reasons I chose North Colorado Family Medicine. If you’re like me and interested in almost every aspect of Family Medicine, I would highly encourage you to consider our program. Best of luck on your future endeavors!

Tyler Darland, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Surgical OB--Atchison Hospital and Clinics, Atchison, Kansas 

University of Kansas School of Medicine—Class of 2017 

NCFM Core Program Class of 2020

My name is Tyler Darland and I finished residency at North Colorado Family Medicine in Greeley, CO this last June. I was born and raised in Kansas. I attended undergrad and medical school at the University of Kansas and had only lived in Kansas until going to Greeley, CO for residency.  

I am grateful for the training I received at NCFM. When looking for a residency program, I knew I wanted to go to a program that would challenge me. I wanted to go to an unopposed (no other specialty residency programs) full-spectrum program (one where residents had a lot of responsibilities on the adult inpatient service, pediatric inpatient service, obstetrics, outpatient medicine as well as the opportunity to be trained in various procedures). There are a few programs like this throughout the country (including Kansas). However, at NCFM, I felt like my personality fit well with the other residents that I had interacted with during the interview season. In addition to this, I also felt that it was an opportunity for me to live outside of Kansas and see what medicine is like in another place.  

I feel that I received the training that I wanted from NCFM. The obstetric training is strong. I delivered 239 babies while in residency (both vaginal and Cesarean sections; I was considered a “black cloud” on the OB service though…). I feel that we had a good variety of different medical conditions on adult medicine. On peds, there is a pediatric hospitalist, Dr. Money, who loves to teach and wants residents involved. I also personally liked that our Family Medicine attendings also see patients on Peds, so you get to experience both styles of practicing Pediatrics. During my NICU rotation, I was able to work with the two pediatric neonatologists and NNPs. I got experience with neonatal resuscitation, stabilization, and management of many common neonatal conditions, which will be extremely helpful in my future practice in a rural town. The NCFM clinic serves a wide variety of patients: Medicaid, under-insured, prenatal care, pediatrics, geriatrics, and everything in between. I was able to be trained in many office-based procedures, which I particularly enjoy.  

The NCFM community is incredibly supportive. All the faculty are approachable and want to help and guide you. They were there for me on the hardest of days, providing advice, or sometimes just lending an ear. The residents, though, are the heart and soul of the program. Residency is much easier when you like those you are working alongside. I was motivated by my co-residents to do better and continue to work at providing better medical care. I also relied on them to help me through the hard days and I tried to do the same for them.  

I have now started my first job in Atchison, KS, a rural town of 11,000 located one hour north of Kansas City. My primary responsibilities will be clinic, inpatient pediatrics, and obstetrics with C-sections. I can pick up hospitalist shifts if I would like. I also can cover the ED if I desire as well. I am confident that my training has prepared me well for this new job. 

Cameron Scranton, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Surgical OB-- Havre, MT

University of Washington School of Medicine and RUOP

NCFM Sterling Rural Program Class of 2020

I grew up in rural areas my entire life and have always known I wanted to return to a rural area to practice medicine. When I was applying to programs for residency I was intrigued by rural training tracks. While interviewing I visited a number of sites and Sterling stood out above all programs.  Although the program had only been in place for one year when I interviewed, I could see right away it was set up for success. It was associated with North Colorado Family Medicine in Greeley, which already had a well-recognized and prominent rural track in Wray, Colorado.  The Sterling track has been modeled after this program, but on a slightly larger scale. I was impressed by the enthusiasm of the faculty and could see they all had a similar goal of producing well-rounded family physicians. The program allowed a resident to experience full spectrum family medicine on a daily basis. Unlike many other rural tracks I had visited, this program allowed the opportunity to work closely with ER physicians, OBGYN’s, Internal medicine trained hospitalists and many other specialized physicians, all while working closely with full spectrum family doctors. This setting allowed for a resident to learn c-sections, colonoscopies, paracentesis, thoracentesis, central lines, intubations along with many other procedures. In the end I felt no other program I visited or read about offered all of these opportunities in one place. 

Now that I have finished my training, I look back at my decision fondly. I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to train where I did. The people associated with the hospital in Sterling from janitors/cafeteria staff all the way up to the administration became people I knew on a first name basis. I made so many good friends during my time there.  

I came out a fully competent full spectrum family doctor. I was easily able to obtain a job working in rural Montana. This had always been my dream. As an attending I will be practicing surgical OB, working as a hospitalist, doing colonoscopy/EGDs and caring for families in the clinic. I feel that the Sterling RTT more than set me up for success and has allowed me to live out this dream.   

Caroline Pihl, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician with Surgical OB, Livingston, MT

University of Washington School of Medicine and RUOP/TRUST (Libby, MT)

NCFM Core Program Class of 2020

Rural. Underserved. Full-scope obstetrics. These are the reasons I chose North Colorado Family Medicine in Greeley, CO, and the choice paid off. I left the program with 150 cesarean sections, confidence in very high risk obstetric management, passion for inpatient medicine, and the ability to handle a busy clinic schedule. I spent free time working with the very willing anesthesiology group to improve my confidence in intubations; and in the ICU getting a few extra central lines. NCFM was the perfect transition from TRUST and all the things I appreciated most about the WWAMI network. I have settled in Lander, Wyoming to practice underserved, remote and rural medicine for the Arapaho Tribe. I will be managing sick patients and performing full-scope obstetrics -- things that NCFM gave me great confidence in. The NCFM OB service is one of the true highlights: 80% of deliveries at the hospital are attended by family doc attendings. From day one as interns, we handle a flood of OB triage visits in coordination with postpartum and newborn care, all the while actively managing any labors, pre-eclampsia or preterm labor patients we have on the deck. In addition to my 150 cesareans, I performed or supervised 180 vaginal deliveries. There’s no better way to learn. 

Greeley is the perfect size town and hospital for residency training. Being unopposed means that all of the consultants in the hospital know us and call us for procedures or interesting cases. As third years, we oversee obstetrics, medicine and pediatric services -- often all three at once! This serves as the perfect capstone to the two prior years of intensive training.

Kelli Larson, DO 

Full-Spectrum Family Medicine with OB, Polson, MT

Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine

NCFM Core Program Class of 2015

I graduated from NCFM in 2015 and am currently employed in rural NW Montana at a critical access hospital and clinic.  I provide full spectrum family medicine care including inpatient, outpatient, and obstetrics.  I feel that the breadth of training provided and skills obtained during residency at NCFM prepared me well for my rural practice.  NCMC is a large enough hospital to ensure experience in terms of volume, but also small enough to ensure relationships are built and your education is personalized and tailored to your interests.  If I had to do it all over again I would certainly pick NCFM in a heartbeat!

Elisa Troyer, MD

Full-Spectrum Family Physician, Safford, AZ

Eastern Virginia Medical School

NCFM Core Program Class of 2020

The implication that Family Medicine is something of a last resort – what people do if they can’t do anything else – is an issue that many medical students face all around the country as they are choosing their futures. It is a detrimental misconception that is incredibly damaging to our health as nation, affecting everyone from rural areas to the inner city. Though this specialty takes many forms, in college and medical school on the East Coast, I barely heard the terms “full-spectrum” or “broad scope of practice” in connection with Family Medicine except as a reference to a back-in-the-day, cowboy type story. While attending the AAFP conference in Kansas City during my fourth year of medical school, however, I discovered to my surprise that family doctors still do work “the old way.” Furthermore, I learned that residency programs still exist to train new people to do the same, and a whole world was opened up to me. At NCFM, I found a group of passionate, skilled, and extraordinarily intelligent faculty and residents that I not only liked, but that I wanted to be like. They were doing the things I dreamed of doing – rounding on adult and pediatric patients in the hospital, practicing solid and up-to-date medicine in clinic with lots of procedures, and dashing over to labor and delivery to catch a baby or even perform a Cesarean section. Over the course of my training, I joined this workforce while being encouraged by supportive peers and mentors to continually push myself to be a better doctor. In a field that is endlessly engaging and ever-changing, I know that I will never get bored or feel like I’m “too smart” to work in Family Medicine. I am proud of the doctor I have become at North Colorado Family Medicine, and I know that the training I received here will serve me well as I continue to provide full-spectrum care in rural southern Arizona.

Tom Golden, MD, MPH

Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the CDC

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School

NCFM Sunrise Program Class of 2020

In June 2016, I returned to the United States after completing a year-long course of study to obtain a Master’s in Public Health at University College Cork in Ireland. I had elected to pursue my MPH in Ireland for a number of reasons, but principal among them was the strong connection I had felt to the country throughout my life as the descendant of Irish immigrants and the strong ties my family maintained with relatives who still live on the Emerald Isle. While I learned a great deal about public health during this year, I also learned much about my own family’s history and the reasons for our relocation from the old homeland to the United States over the course of successive crises and generations, ranging from famine in the mid 19th century to political turmoil and persecution in the early 20th century. My year in Ireland also happened to coincide with the European migrant crisis of 2015, and I quickly came to see the similarities between the plight of present-day refugees and the historical struggles of my own family. This contemporary iteration of the transcendent human saga of searching for a better life and a stable home when faced with upheaval and persecution had a profound effect on me.

After returning home, my wife and I signed a lease for an apartment in Jersey City, New Jersey, as I prepared to resume my medical education in my final year at Rutgers University. During my evening runs along the Hudson River, I was constantly reminded of that timeless struggle of the world’s huddled masses as I encountered Lady Liberty in all her glory at the mouth of New York Harbor. As I began to envision the ideal environment to pursue my postgraduate medical education, I knew that care for the underserved and immigrant/refugee communities was paramount.

Prior to entering medical school, I spent some time volunteering and shadowing at a rural community health center in the Mississippi Delta. During this clinical experience, I had the privilege of witnessing firsthand the compassionate, full-scope, and patient-oriented care that rural family physicians provided. Throughout medical school, I sought clinical experiences and mentorship that further confirmed my desire to pursue residency training at an unopposed, full-scope family medicine program. Time and again during my years in medical school, when I explained to my family physician mentors what I sought in an ideal residency program, they recommended I apply to North Colorado Family Medicine in Greeley, Colorado. Therefore, at the outset of my fourth year of medical school, I applied to and was accepted for a four-week sub-internship on the labor and delivery ward at North Colorado Medical Center.

I was immediately impressed by the quality of care, the scope of care, and the knowledge exhibited by the residents at NCFM. I participated in far more deliveries in four weeks at NCMC than I had in my entire 8-week clerkship in obstetrics as a third year medical student. I also had the opportunity to spend some time at the Sunrise Community Health Center, which provides care for many members of the large immigrant and refugee communities in Greeley. At the end of my sub-internship, I knew that the Sunrise track at North Colorado Family Medicine was my top choice for residency. It remained the top choice throughout my entire interview process, it was my top choice on my rank list, and I was extremely fortunate to match with them.

Now that I have completed my residency training, I cannot fathom having had a better experience anywhere other than at North Colorado Family Medicine. In a typical day at my outpatient continuity clinic at Sunrise, I treated patients from Somalia, Myanmar, Benin, Mexico, Guatemala, and Colorado. I frequently utilized my Spanish and French language skills with the many immigrant and refugee patients for whom I cared. While on the inpatient services in the hospital, I gained extensive experience caring for patients in labor with high-risk pregnancies. I cared for pediatric patients who received PICU-level care at our community hospital. During my NICU rotation, I cared for premature and newborn babies with an array of health challenges, and I built strong, close relationships with these infants’ family members. I engaged in all of this clinical care while under the supervision of our program’s supervising faculty who combine their sound theoretical knowledge with deft clinical acumen; furthermore, they always seemed to strike a perfect balance between offering advice and encouraging residents to take risks and make their own decisions when warranted. As part of NCFM’s global health elective curriculum, I had the opportunity to travel to the island nation of Mauritius during my second year of residency to enhance my French language skills and to experience the practice of medicine in a different cultural context.

I am exceedingly grateful for the mentorship, the guidance, and the training that I received at North Colorado Family Medicine. I have elected to continue my career as an Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where I will work to mitigate and control threats to the public health of Americans; I am currently working on the emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The attention that so many of my peers and attendings dedicated to social determinants of health of root causes of health inequity inspired me to pursue this public health opportunity. However, during my time at CDC, I will continue to practice clinical medicine at local community clinics and hospitals. I know that I will be prepared for whatever pathology or condition I may see due to the phenomenal training and experience that I had as a resident at North Colorado Family Medicine.

Alison Kimball, MD

Attending Physician, Sunrise Community Health--Monfort Family Clinic

NCFM Sunrise Program Class of 2016

“As I was considering different residency programs, Greeley stood out to me because of its can-do attitude to approach the many facets of primary care with confidence. I ranked NCFM (Sunrise Track) first because it would allow me to learn surgical obstetrics in addition to solid inpatient and outpatient medicine that I could use in any number of underserved settings.  Through residency, the faculty guided me from the strong foundations they had forged in rural medicine.  I felt supported by the community created by the Advanced Maternity Care Track and the Global Health Path and energized to be learning alongside others who were excited about the same topics.  Sunrise’s undying commitment to underserved patients embodied the kind of service I wanted to provide as a physician.  I have cherished the diversity of our clinic – the joy of speaking Spanish with many of my patients and the smile that comes across my face when I see people from all corners of the world who are our patients.  I chose to stay at Sunrise after graduation to continue practicing in this setting, using my skills in obstetric ultrasound, surgical obstetrics and solid outpatient medicine, all while getting to teach residents in a place that feels like home.”  

Kristine Anderson, MD

University of Minnesota Medical School

Faculty Physician, Baraboo Rural Training Track Family Medicine Residency, Baraboo WI 

NCFM Core Program Class of 2018

When looking for a residency program, I was searching for a place that offered true full-scope training, with a heavy emphasis on OB.  As a former RPAP graduate (’13-’14 Bigfork, MN), I was also searching for a program that would feel like a natural extension to my RPAP training.  I wanted a program that valued rural full-scope training; a program that was truly hands-on and flexible; a community-based program that valued evidence-based medicine; and a program that had the perfect balance of both pushing and supporting me throughout residency.  I could not be happier with matching at North Colorado Family Medicine in Greeley, CO. After residency, I will be working as a full-scope family physician (inpatient, OB, pediatrics, and clinic) at a rural training track in a smaller town in Wisconsin.  Throughout my at North Colorado Family Medicine I have felt supported, challenged and encouraged to pursue the good old-fashioned, full-scope family medicine that I was first exposed to in RPAP.

Courtney Hathaway, MD 

Full-Spectrum Family Physician, Missoula, MT

University of Washington School of Medicine

NCFM Core Program Class of 2016

Of the hundreds of Family medicine residencies to choose from, I found only a handful that were truly teaching their residents to be top notch full spectrum doctors, and even fewer that offered C-section and other procedural training.  During my search one program rose to the top immediately.  North Colorado Family Medicine, nestled in the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Greeley, CO was not only offering the training I wanted, but also had the results to prove it.  They had far more graduates doing OB and inpatient medicine and practicing in rural areas than just about any other program I looked at. 

My time at NCFM was exactly as I had hoped, full of procedures, circumcisions, IUDs and Nexplanons galore, knee injections, toenail removals and colonoscopies abound.  There was never a shortage of complex inpatient cases, managing NICU, burn unit and ICU admits all in one night. Two and three generations of the same family called me doctor in my continuity clinic.  And I literally delivered hundreds of babies!  It was incredibly rigorous, and for good reason.  When comparing with my UW colleagues at other programs it was obvious that I was seeing more patients, getting more autonomy with complex medical decision making, and becoming better prepared for attending life. 

When I started to look for my first job out of residency I had my choice of countless amazing opportunities, and eventually landed in Gardner Kansas, a small town outside of Kansas City, doing full spectrum family medicine, OB, inpatient, NICU and outpatient clinic.  I share call with 8 other doctors and have heard many times how well prepared I was as a new attending.  Being out on your own in practice is incredibly humbling and terrifying, and I could not do this job without the unique training I received at NCFM. 

Numbers matter!  You won’t know how to handle a 2-minute shoulder dystocia if you’ve never seen one, and it wasn’t until my 50th delivery at NCFM that I had to manage one.  Most Family Med residencies are requiring fewer than 50 deliveries, total.  In 200+ deliveries I did in residency, I had about 10-15 vacuum extractions, which is just 5%, yet my Very First delivery in practice was an emergent vacuum extraction for category 3 heart tones.  Imagine if I had only ever done one in residency?  Experience matters!  You can’t recognize sick, I mean Really sick, until you’ve managed an ICU full of critically ill patients, and very few residencies offer open ICUs, putting you as the Family medicine resident leading rounds each day.  As a WRITE student, I chose NCFM for its reputation of producing well trained, full spectrum family doctors, and its amazing world class faculty, and I could not be more thankful for the training I received.” 

Amy Jochims, MD 

Full-Spectrum Family Physician, Spencer, IA

University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine

NCFM Core Program Class of 2017

I am definitely into the world of rural medicine here in NW Iowa.  I had my first call weekend last weekend and was the sole provider admitting any patient to the hospital, which meant an OB, newborns, a postpartum patient with endometritis, a COVID patient, a hip fracture, and someone into the ICU. 

 I kept thinking, holy cow, I'm so glad I trained at NCFM!

Asa F. Ware, MD

Full Spectrum Faculty Physician with Obstetrics--NCFM

University of Colorado School of Medicine and Rural Track

NCFM Core Program Class of 2016

Having grown up in rural, North Eastern, Colorado, my idea of a doctor was that of a rural family physician—and that's what I wanted to be. I was initially drawn to NCFM because of the broad-spectrum training. The term broad-spectrum is loosely used to describe the training at many family medicine residencies, and the term has a wide range of meanings. At NCFM, broad-spectrum is used in its truest form—caring for a wide range of patients with many different conditions in multiple settings and caring for the patient as a whole.  I chose NCFM for their broad-spectrum training—its robust inpatient adult medicine and inpatient pediatrics training (including training in both the Intensive Care Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit), its strength in OB training which includes management of high-risk patients and can include surgical obstetric training (primary C-sections), and its thorough outpatient training in the care of adults and children. I wanted to do residency where I was going to have the chance to see and do the most so that when I was out in practice by myself, I wouldn’t be surprised.  I also wanted to train where I would feel supported, energized, and motivated. After doing a rotation in Greeley, I immediately felt at home. The faculty and residents were so welcoming and went out of their way to teach and encourage.  And that’s how it remained during residency. I ultimately choose to do residency at NCFM for several reasons—the culture, the people, the residents, the faculty, and the training that wouldn’t force me to prematurely close any doors on where I could go or what I could do in my future practice. The training truly allows for a future practice anywhere (rural, underserved, global, etc).  I’ve now been fortunate to stay on as faculty at NCFM in Greeley--a setting that fosters education and promotes learning at all levels. Every day I go to work, I'm grateful for the training that’s prepared me to comprehensively take care of my patients from all walks of life.