Primary Care Leadership Track

Learn more about the primary care leadership track by watching our brief video.

Our Mission

Cultivating an appreciation for the scope of primary care through longitudinal care for underserved communities.

Our Goal

The goal of the Primary Care Leadership Track is to provide opportunities for students to gain an appreciation for the importance of primary care through chronic disease management in underserved communities, primary care research, mentorship training, and leadership development.  Students will be paired with a primary care faculty mentor for a clinical experience where they will follow a patient longitudinally, and a research mentor to carry out a research project on a topic relevant to primary care. 

Track Objectives

  • Students will demonstrate:
    • Improved understanding of primary care’s role in the healthcare system as well as of the scope, importance, and complexity of primary care
    • Improved cultural competence, social empathy, attitudes towards underserved communities and professional identity formation
  • Students will develop:
    • Clinical skills through longitudinal clinical underserved experiences
    • Community engagement skills through longitudinal community-based underserved experiences
    • Mentorship skills through longitudinal multi-level inter-professional mentor/mentee roles and training.

Yearly Track Requirements

  • Year 1
    • Orientation to Primary Care Workshop: 2 half days during dedicated track time in April 
    • Primary Care Boot Camp
    • Research Project, Longitudinal AC, Begin CBL project (Summer)
  • Summer between Year 1 and Year 2
    • AHEC Scholars didactics: 1 half-day weekly
    • CBL project: 1-2 half-days weekly
    • Clinical work at your site: 2-3 half-days weekly
    • Pathway  student mentorship: 1 half-day weekly
    • AHEC Scholars summer research project: varies
  • Year 2
    • 3 half-day visits with longitudinal patient
    • 2 CBL sessions
    • 2 half-days of track activities during Journeys I
    • Longitudinal AC and CBL family workshop
  • Year 3
    • Family Medicine or Pediatrics clerkship at assigned site (unless accepted to Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship)
    • 2 additional visits with longitudinal patient over the course of the year
    • 2 CBL sessions
  • Year 4
    • Health Policy Elective at Robert Graham Center
      • Includes 2-3 half days per week at clinical site
    • 2 additional visits with longitudinal patient over the course of the year
    • 2 CBL sessions
    • Capstone Event: present research at M4 Research Day

AHEC Scholar Requirements

All PCLT clinical sites are designated DC Area Health Education Center (AHEC) sites, which provide healthcare for underserved communities. DC AHEC’s mission is to “enhance access to quality health care, particularly primary and preventive care, by improving the supply and distribution of healthcare professionals.” By virtue of their participation in the PCLT’s clinical, didactic, and community-based learning curriculum, all track students will also meet the criteria to become nationally recognized AHEC Scholars.

  1. Complete 40 hours per year of clinical experience in an AHEC Center or site during a 2 year period (80 hours total).  Primary Care Leadership Track students will all be placed at AHEC sites, and PCLT clinical requirements over the summer and M2-3 count towards this requirement.
  2. Complete 40 hours per year of didactics during a 2-year period (80 hours total) based on the 6 core AHEC topic areas (interprofessional education, behavioral health integration, social determinants of health, cultural competency, practice transformation, and opioid use disorder).  There are a variety of ways you can complete these hours (e.g., Primary Care Mentorship Program, Primary Care Leadership Track events, FM/Peds/IM grand rounds, FM/Peds/IM Student Interest Group events, Office of Diversity and Inclusion events, local and national primary care conferences, and online modules). 

Longitudinal Components

  • Ambulatory Care: each student will be assigned to one of five underserved clinical sites where they will follow a patient or family longitudinally. Students are encouraged to attend diagnostic and specialty appointments whenever possible.
  • Community-Based Learning: each student will participate in a longitudinal CBL project at the U.S. Dream Academy, an after-school program for elementary school children of incarcerated parents. Students will develop a longitudinal Mini Med School curriculum and one-on-one mentorship relationships with the children.
  • Faculty Mentorship: each student will meet biannually with his/her faculty mentor and have additional opportunities to meet other primary care faculty at social events.
  • Peer Mentorship: each student will develop mentorship relationships with M1s-M3s as they progress through the track, along with primary care pathway students in the GEP (high school), CORE/ARCHES (college) and GEMS (post-baccalaureate) programs. 
  • Didactics: students will be required to attend didactic sessions on inter-professional education, behavioral health integration, social determinants of health, cultural competency, practice transformation, and current and emerging health issues.

Clinical Sites

Core Faculty


For additional information about the track, please contact Track Director, Kathryn Hart, MD (new window) or view/download our brochure.

Track Coordinator Kedryn Berrian