Thank you for your interest in the Wisconsin Academy for Rural Medicine (WARM) program at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.

We are pleased to share with you more of the wonderful attributes that make WARM an exceptional training option as you pursue your goal to be a rural physician. Learn more here and through your faculty interview. You will also have the opportunity to join interactive Q&A sessions with current WARM students. We wish you the best with your application and throughout the process.

Students put a cast on a wrist
Hands on learning can mean taking turns at casting techniques.

Please contact us with any questions.

Joseph P. Holt, MD
Director, Wisconsin Academy for Rural Medicine

Kimberly M. Lansing, MD, PhD
Associate Director of Curriculum and Faculty Development, WARM

Paul Hunter, MD
Associate Director of Public Health and Community Programs, WARM

Alison Klein, MPA
Assistant Director, Wisconsin Academy for Rural Medicine

Kithy Elliott
Program Assistant, Wisconsin Academy for Rural Medicine

WARM students relocate to one of our statewide academic campuses for 28 months of their curriculum, during Phases 2 and 3.

This includes Aurora BayCare in Green Bay, Gundersen Health System in La Crosse and Marshfield Clinic Health System in Marshfield, and their respective network of rural clinics host WARM students.

Each site enhances the curriculum, features its own sense of community and provides unique experiences for you to make connections with their colleagues. Hear from the site directors and coordinators from each site about what makes their rural community unique.

See the Wisconsin Academy for Rural Medicine (WARM) program in action in Green Bay. This news story, from WBAY, profiles the need for rural physicians, captures the inspiration for two students, and highlights the impact of the program.

Gundersen Health System/Western Academic Campus

Site director: Dr. Kim Lansing
Site coordinator: Nicole Aponte


At the La Crosse site, there is a Community Healthcare System (Gundersen Health Systems) that serves as a hub training site, and students also experience being a part of one of five regional rural underserved clinics in Viroqua, Sparta, Tomah, Whitehall, and Decorah, Iowa. This mixture of rural and community medical care allows learners to “try out” these environments and gain exposure to some of the various groups we serve including Plain People, Latinx migrant workers, Native Americans, Hmong, and a fairly significant group of impoverished people.

Community relationships are very important to us in La Crosse, and we have many opportunities to be involved in meaningful community interactions, including mentoring for the Health Sciences Academy, participation in community and rural training drills (“disaster drills”) for La Crosse Police, Fire Department (including five rural fire departments) and School District groups, and a large selection of various other community groups. Community projects of all kinds are a great strength for us in La Crosse, and there is a myriad of resources available to help ensure a rich and rewarding experience.


Students in La Crosse love the accessibility of faculty and staff, who provide a lot of one-on-one attention for them. The learning environment is friendly and supportive, and our WARM students and faculty/staff provide a very “family-like” atmosphere for everyone. We are always here for you!

La Crosse is also in a very beautiful area of the state, nestled in the Driftless Region. This gives us some interesting topography with the bluffs and coulees, and the mighty Mississippi makes up the “West Coast” of Wisconsin all along our Western border. Consequently, there is a broad selection of great outdoor activities across all four seasons, enhanced by a thriving arts community, three colleges, and plenty of great places to sample the local cuisine.


"WARM students are the best! I’ve been teaching medical students in one form or another for more than 25 years and WARM students are truly my favorite. They are bright, dedicated, hard-working and enthusiastic. They are in medicine for ALL of the right reasons. Our students are always quick to step up to help and genuinely care for their colleagues and those in their community. I am proud of them and all that they have done for our community over the years." - Dr. Kim Lansing

Marshfield Clinic Health System/Northern Academic Campus

Site director: Dr. Steve Holthaus (Rice Lake), Dr. Katie Reimer (Marshfield)
Site coordinator: Kathy Heintz-Dzikowich


The WARM program within the Marshfield Clinic Health System offers students clinical training in a variety of rural settings, from the larger tertiary care center in Marshfield to smaller clinics and hospitals. Through this exposure, students can interact with patients throughout our health care system to achieve an understanding of rural health delivery. Students benefit from working on resident teams for some rotations, but also have the opportunity to work one-on-one with attending physicians to provide rural health care.


Students enjoy living in beautiful and friendly rural communities in central and northern Wisconsin while engaging in high quality, supportive clinical learning environments. Students value the “hands-on” learning and personalized instruction of their clinical rotations.

The Marshfield Clinic and UWSMPH have a long-standing partnership committed to providing outstanding education to medical students.


The WARM program and students are highly valued throughout the system in the interest of supporting students individually and also in supporting the mission of the Marshfield Clinic. The clinic’s mission is to improve the health of the communities we serve by providing high quality, accessible, and affordable health care. Providing education to future rural physicians is essential to fulfilling this mission and strengthening the future of rural health care in Wisconsin.

Advocate Aurora Health/Eastern Academic Campus

Site director: Dr. Michael Medich
Site coordinator: Cali Nygren

Medical students
Eastern Academic Campus site director Michael Medich, MD, top left, says WARM students to be among the most enjoyable of all learners to teach.


At Aurora BayCare in Green Bay, we provide a strong clinical experience for students, and ample opportunity to experience the practice of clinical medicine in various northeastern Wisconsin rural communities with experienced primary care preceptors. Opportunities offered include clinics in Sturgeon Bay, DePere, New Franken, Two Rivers, Howards Grove, Sheboygan, and Plymouth.


We provide a strong clinical experience for medical students. Because there are no interns or residents at our institution the medical students work one-on-one with the attending physician and participate in patient care, including medical procedures, typically the responsibility of house officers. It is a common place for students to be involved in delivering babies, assisting with inpatient and outpatient medical procedures and in the OR. That being said there is close supervision and readily available expertise to assure a safe and comfortable learning environment.


"I have been involved in Medical Education at various levels for most of a nearly 30-year career as an Emergency Medicine attending. I have found the WARM students to be among the most enjoyable of all learners to teach. They are almost without exception bright, motivated, caring, resourceful, committed to the professionalism of their calling and to do their best. These sentiments have been echoed by other colleagues who find the education of WARM students to be among the most satisfying activities of their careers." - Dr. Michael Medich