First Nations Community Education Program

Students working on a moosehideThe First Nations Health Authority,    Northern Health, the Northern Medical Program and the Health Arts Research Centre have partnered on a unique program that offers MD undergraduate students an opportunity to be immersed in a northern BC First Nations community.

The program is designed to have medical students deeply absorbed into a northern First Nation community and thus provide future physicians an opportunity to critically and creatively reflect on their own understandings about health, wellness, resiliency, capacity and culture in northern First Nations.

carvingsGoals of the Program

  • To enhance cultural competency and empathic understanding of health and wellness in northern First Nations communities.
  • To improve First Nations’ accessibility to high quality primary care services.
  • To provide genuine cultural exchange for students considering working with First Nations peoples in their future practice.

Float Plane“Visiting this northern First Nations community was an amazing experience!
I was involved in unique experiences like arriving in a float plane, harvesting seaweed, hauling in and harvesting fresh crab, and listening to locally recorded whale sounds and then watching them feed. This is a wonderful initiative and I was very happy to be involved!”  - Student participant


Applications are accepted at various times throughout the year on a first-come, first-served basis. Please refer to the FLEX Activity Catalogue in ENTRADA for dates available.

Interested students are asked to contact Dr. Sarah de Leeuw at or Katriona Auerbach at the Health Arts Research Centre at for further information about this program.