Family Medicine/Primary Care

Family Medicine Scholars Program

Co-directors: Shira Goldstein, MD and Nahid Rianon, MD DrPH


Family Medicine is a primary care specialty where we serve people from all spheres of life. Underserved to privileged are all served from the beginning to the end of life by a family physician. The long-term relationship with their primary care provider (PCP) helps patient understand, improve, and maintain their health. A family physician is an essential part of building a healthy community through preventive and chronic disease management and health education. A family physician in an academic program is also an academic leader who shape the future of medicine. While it can be vast, one can also find a sub-specialty within the primary care umbrella, e.g., concentrate on procedures that can be done in clinic or in day-surgery setting like colonoscopy, geriatric medicine, women’s health including full-fledged obstetric care, bone health/osteoporosis, weight loss or obesity related care, mental health/ADHD/depression care etc. Family physicians help patients maintain their complex and multiple health problems through developing and practicing evidence based medicine, collaborating with multiple specialties and communicating plans with patients and caregivers. Journey of a patient’s health life begins by establishing a PCP and a family physician can carry this relationship throughout the patients’ life helping him/her go through all stages of life while being with the patient in their most important and critical moments.

Mission: aligned with the mission of the McGovern Medical School, Family Medicine/Primary Care scholarly concentration aims to promote high quality and cutting edge education though clinical and scholarly exposures and experience with an ultimate goal of producing high quality physicians, educators, clinical leaders and researchers.

Purpose/Goals: To provide an opportunity to enrich student experience about family medicine through learning and scholarly activities related to primary care specific health topics through a longitudinal educational program throughout the medical school years.

The program goal is to provide:

  1. Clinical experience in both in- and out-patient settings
  2. Mentorship and guidance for academic and personal growth/development
  3. Understanding the breadth of primary care specialty
  4. Leadership in clinical practice in primary care
  5. Complete required curriculum (doctoring 1 and 2)

Basic requirements:

  1. Clinical experience
  2. Guided scholarly project
  3. Attending specific academic meetings
  4. Becoming members of interest groups and professional societies
  5. Attend family medicine grand rounds
  6. Optional – a quality improvement project in addition to guided scholarly project

Student Selection Process:

During their MS1 year (and MSII, if they are committed to complete the requirements for MS1 year), students will submit an application via the Scholarly Concentration website: which includes a personal statement detailing why they aim to become a primary care physician. The co-directors will review the applications and will select admission based on the students’ commitment to primary care. Upon selection into the scholarly concentration, the co-directors will help students identify a mentor and monitor the students’ progress. Only students in good academic standing will be admitted. Four students will be admitted each year.

Successful completion of all Scholarly Concentration requirements will result in special recognition in the commencement program; a program-specific certificate of completion; and a program-specific scholarly designation on the student’s academic transcript. Participation will also be reflected in the student’s “Medical Student Performance Evaluation.”

Year 1

Application and acceptance to the Family Medicine Scholars Program

Join and participate in Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG)

Join and participate in Harris County Chapter of Texas Academy of Family Physicians

Complete Doctoring 1 course with a primary care faculty (waived for this year as you have already started your course).

Identify a mentor and attend quarterly meetings

Initiation of scholarly project by the end of MSI year with guidance from mentor

Attend 2 of the family medicine monthly grand rounds


Year 2

Participation in Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG)

Complete Doctoring 2 course with a primary care faculty

Continue to meet quarterly with faculty mentor

Attend meetings of Harris County Chapter Texas Academy of Family Physicians

Continued work on scholarly project with guidance from mentor

Attend 2 of the family medicine grand rounds


Year 3

Complete 3rd year Core Clerkship in Family Medicine

Quarterly meetings with mentor


Year 4

Quarterly meetings with mentor

Complete Ambulatory Medicine rotation in family medicine

Complete Advanced Inpatient Care rotation of a Family Medicine Service at MHH or LBJ

Participate in FMIG

Attend 2 family medicine grand rounds

Join Primary Care Focus Track

Complete an independent study in order to complete the scholarly project. (if this is a research or QI project and the student worked on it throughout his/her participation in scholarly concentration, no new independent study is required)

Present scholarly activity at departmental meeting and at a state or national meeting


Faculty Name Contribution(s) to Concentration Interests
Rianon, Nahid MD DrPH Co-director and Mentor Medical Student and Residency Education, Geriatrics, Osteoporosis, Leadership, Quality Improvement
Goldstein, Shira MD Co-director and Mentor Medical Student and Residency Education, Women’s Health
Adeyinka, Olasunkanmi MD Mentor Hospitalist Medicine, Practice Management
Altman, Michael MD Mentor Sports Medicine, Procedures
Aquino, Pedro MD Mentor Procedures, Hospitalist Medicine
Moreno, Carlos MD, MSPH Chair and Mentor Leadership, Research, Health Policy
Northrup, Thomas PhD Research Mentor Behavioral Medicine, Research
Stotts, Angela PhD Research Mentor Behavioral Medicine, Research
Tyler, Chermaine PhD Research Mentor Behavioral Medicine, Research
Wah, Yu MD Mentor Dermatology in Primary Care
Zulfiqar, Amber MD Mentor Geriatrics