UM Students Accepted to Rural Physicians Program

Scholars agree to serve in small Mississippi communities after graduation

UM students who have been selected for the undergraduate portion of this year’s Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program are (top row, from left) Deshauntra Green, Karina Rodriguez-Castillo, Shade Smith and Grace Pipkin and (bottom row, from left) Jazmin King, Liz Sprabery, Jada King and Katherine Morgan. Photos by Jay Ferchaud/UM Medical Center

JACKSON, Miss – Several students at the University of Mississippi were recently selected to participate in the undergraduate portion of the Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program.

The Ole Miss students are:

  • Deshauntra Green, of Fayette
  • Jada King, of Bay Springs
  • Jazmin King, of Bay Springs
  • Katherine Morgan, of Hatley
  • Grace Pipkin, of Hickory Flat
  • Karina Rodriguez-Castillo, of Southaven
  • Shade Smith, of Moorhead
  • Liz Sprabery, of Vimville

Created in 2007, MRPSP identifies college sophomores and juniors who demonstrate the necessary commitment and academic achievement to become competent rural primary care physicians in the state. The program offers undergraduate academic enrichment and a clinical experience in a rural setting.

Upon completion of all medical school admissions requirements, the student can use the scholarship at the UM School of Medicine or William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine.

During medical school, each MRPSP scholar may receive $30,000 per year, based on available funding. Consistent legislative support of the program translates to 61 medical students receiving a total of $1.83 million to support their education this fall. Besides the legislative support, three privately funded scholarships are also awarded from the Madison Charitable Foundation, the Selby and Richard McRae Foundation, and the Medical Assurance Company of Mississippi.

Additional benefits include personalized mentoring from practicing rural physicians and academic support. 

Upon completion of medical school, MRPSP scholars must enter a residency program in one of five primary care specialties: family medicine, general internal medicine, pediatrics, medicine-pediatrics, or obstetrics/gynecology. The scholar must provide four years of service in a clinic-based practice in an approved Mississippi community of 15,000 or fewer population located more than 20 miles from a medically served area.

The MRPSP provides a means for rural Mississippi students to earn a seat in medical school, receive mentoring during the medical school application process, earn a $120,000 medical school scholarship in return for four years of service, and learn the art of healing from practicing rural physicians.

For more information, contact MRPSP Associate Director Steven Carter at 601-815-9022, or