Northern Arizona University (NAU) announced it will be opening a new medical school specifically focused on training Arizona residents committed to remaining in the state. The NAU School of Medicine will specialize in educating primary healthcare providers and is particularly interested in applicants who wish to serve rural, indigenous, and underserved communities. Part of the medical school’s plan will be a tuition coverage program that is supposed to cover all medical school costs for graduates who remain in Arizona after graduation. Details are scarce right now, but the plan is supposed to be similar to the teacher’s program which reimburses teachers who remain in Arizona after receiving their degrees.
NAU President José Luis Cruz Rivera explained, “I am proud to announce this bold and transformative step, which builds on NAU’s legacy of serving the people and communities of Arizona by launching NAU Health and paving the way for a College of Medicine in northern Arizona. With the creation of NAU Health, we recommit ourselves to elevating our existing, exceptional health education programs with the goal of doubling the number of degrees awarded by NAU in the much-needed fields of nursing, health professions, and behavioral health and increasing provider availability in every nook and corner of the state.”