Alabama Medical Education Consortium (AMEC) Update

The state funded Alabama Medical Education Consortium (AMEC) was incorporated in 2004 as a 501C3 to increase the number of physicians in rural and underserved areas of Alabama. The AMEC Pipeline successfully brought third- and fourth-year medical students to Alabama for their last two years of medical school developing statewide core sites for clinical training to provide community-based education.  The core teaching sites were later committed to the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) for placement of its third- and fourth-year medical students for clinical clerkships.

A second mission began in 2017 to assist hospitals with startup state funding and consultation to develop residency programs. Recognizing that many physicians tend to practice near where they train, AMEC began conversations with Alabama hospitals about developing residency programs.  AMEC and ACOM have successfully worked to develop and enrich the growing number of teaching hospitals in Alabama. In 2023, 13 Alabama hospitals had established Graduate Medical Education programs.

We are pleased to share the data below about the programs and the resident/physician population generated by AMEC/ACOM efforts.

Medical student graduates from AMEC’s Pipeline – 328; 121 licensed in Alabama

Residents in AMEC-affiliated programs have grown from 21 in 2017 to 231 in 2023

Number of residency graduates in 2021 – 21; 97 projected for 2023

Residency graduates licensed in Alabama – 33

Alabama Medical Education Consortium (AMEC) Update2023-06-14T09:54:35-05:00

Local Chapter of SAACOFP Receives Humanitarian Award at National Conference

The ACOM chapter of the Student Association of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians (SAACOFP) was recently chosen to receive the Humanitarian Award at the ACOFP 60th Annual Convention & Scientific Seminars.  The convention took place from March 29 – April 2 in Orlando, Florida. The award is given in recognition to the chapter that has excelled in organizing and participating in humanitarian events within their school, community, and beyond while acting as an advocate for osteopathic physicians.

The ACOM chapter of SAACOFP was chosen because of the volunteer work their members perform with the Samaritan Clinic and Samaritan Pantry. Both resources are managed by Love in Action Ministries and offer valuable resources to people in need throughout Dothan. The Samaritan Clinic offers free health and eye care to the homeless, people living in group homes, and inmates on the Houston County Corrections Work Release program, while Samaritan Pantry is a resource that provides food, toiletries hygiene products, and clothing to those in need.

This Humanitarian Award is an honor that recognizes SAACOFP as a group of future physicians who are positively impacting the Dothan area with empathy, compassion, and dedication.

Local Chapter of SAACOFP Receives Humanitarian Award at National Conference2023-05-25T16:35:40-05:00

ACOM Chapter Selected as National SAMOPS Chapter of the Year

The local chapter of the Student Association of Military Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons (SAMOPS) was chosen earlier this year, as the national chapter of the year. The award was presented in March at the AMOPS Annual Meeting & Medical Conference. This is the second year in a row that the ACOM chapter has received this distinction. They were selected above all other applicants due to the extensive community outreach and support that they provide throughout the year at various events.

The ACOM chapter of SAMOPS is an organization for ACOM’s military community, including those currently serving, interested in commissioning, or arriving as a student veteran.

ACOM Chapter Selected as National SAMOPS Chapter of the Year2023-05-30T14:15:24-05:00

ACOM at the SGEA Annual Meeting 2023

The Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) had a strong presence recently in Nashville at the first in-person Southern Group on Education Affairs (SGEA) conference since 2019! The theme was “Building the Future of Medical Education Together.” ACOM faculty participated in the conference planning committee, served as Medical Education Scholarship awards reviewers, and/or facilitated sessions throughout the conference as moderators. ACOM students participated in meaningful conversations during the engaging sessions and workshops by asking thought-provoking questions while raising the dialogue on major themes impacting medical education today. Whether it was in a poster session or an oral presentation, our students presented their research in medical education from the summer research program at ACOM. In addition, ACOM was the only osteopathic school represented among many allopathic medical schools from the Southeast region. ACOM also had the strongest medical school representation from Alabama. Funds available through the division of Anatomy and Molecular Medicine helped support the student research and travel. More information on the conference is available at

SGEA fosters excellence along the continuum of medical education—undergraduate medical education, graduate medical education, and continuing medical education—by providing a forum for discussing the concerns of the medical education profession, serving as a resource, and acting in an advisory capacity to the Group on Educational Affairs (GEA) and the AAMC.

ACOM at the SGEA Annual Meeting 20232023-03-28T15:52:09-05:00

ACOM Hosts SNMA Region IV Medical Education Conference

The Student National Medical Association (SNMA) Region IV Medical Education Conference (RMEC) is an annual conference that allows underrepresented minority medical students, premedical students, and their allies to attend a weekend of innovative programming geared at preparing the next generation of physicians for successful careers in the medical and healthcare fields. RMEC 2023 was held during the weekend of February 3rd at the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM). This year’s conference theme was “R.E.G.I.O.N. IV the Culture: Revitalizing, Energizing, Generating, Innovating Our Narrative IV the Culture” where there was a push to revitalize and energize members to feel empowered to generate and innovate their narrative of what the culture and landscape of medicine should like for them and the future patients that they will serve.

The conference weekend hosted over 60 attendees – ranging from high schoolers and undergraduate students to post baccalaureate and medical students. There were various conference tracks to fit the needs of the attendees – a virtual pipeline high school academy, an international medical graduate (IMG) track, and premedical and medical student tracks. The conference hosted an exhibitor fair with various medical and residency programs – even Caribbean school representation was present! The attendees enjoyed talks about finances, networking, medical and residency school applications, had the opportunity to interact in hands-on skills workshops, and so much more! There were smiles on the speakers’ and attendees’ faces alike! No one wanted the programming events to end as there was such engagement from all parties involved.

Overall, RMEC was a phenomenal weekend and an astounding success with many attendees having increased their involvement in SNMA following the conference and are looking for opportunities to encourage their peers to attend the conference next year! This conference would not have been possible without the help of the ACOM SNMA Chapter, the ACOM administrators and staff, the conference sponsors, exhibitors, speakers, and attendees! A huge thank you goes to all of you for supporting SNMA and Region IV the Culture!

Event Photos

ACOM Hosts SNMA Region IV Medical Education Conference2023-03-10T15:37:58-06:00

Second Year Student, Shyamalee Ramaraj Profiled by Local Magazine

Shyamalee Ramaraj might have moved across the state line, but she didn’t go far to make her dream come true to attend medical school a reality. She grew up primarily in Panama City, Florida where she graduated from Bay High School. She stayed in Florida to earn her Bachelors Degree in Biology from FAMU. She accomplished that by the time she was only 20 years old. Her next academic step was obtaining her Masters Degree in Microbiology from the University of Florida. Finally, Ramaraj settled in Dothan and is a second-year student at ACOM. She has been volunteering since she arrived here.

Two organizations that are benefitting from her heart of volunteerism are 334Prevention Project and Dothan City Schools. Through a partnership between the two organizations, Ramaraj and other volunteers are teaching the Mendez Foundation’s “Too Good for Violence” curriculum. She said, “This program is a great supplement to the education that the students are already receiving. We have a focus on drug prevention, but we do more than that. The materials that we use explain the ‘why’ behind it and it helps students so much with critical thinking skills.” All of the volunteers are required to complete a training program conducted by 334Prevention Project Executive Director, Dana Bonney. Regarding Ramaraj, Bonney said, “She brings a level of positivity to the classroom setting causing the students to focus their thoughts on alternative methods of dealing with their stressors.” She is presently volunteering through this program at the Dothan City Schools Virtual School and at Dothan Preparatory Academy.

Ramaraj also volunteers as a Bright Key volunteer tutor at Selma Street Elementary School. When asked about her desire to give back she emphatically commented, “Volunteerism and helping others is the purpose of my existence. Children are the backbone of our society so we want to make sure that we raise children who are genuinely good people. This program helps guide them in the right direction.”

The future Dr.Ramaraj has not decided on a medial focus just yet or where she might land to practice medicine. Based on her perspective of giving back and volunteerism, I am secretly hoping she hangs her medical shingle in Dothan! Thank you Shyamalee for choosing Dothan and for being a HERO in our schools!

Written by Melanie Hill. Originally published in West Dothan Neighbors Magazine. Published here with permission. For more information, visit 334 Prevention Project.
Second Year Student, Shyamalee Ramaraj Profiled by Local Magazine2023-02-28T14:52:54-06:00

ACOM Brings Home Another Sim International Championship

ACOM claimed another international simulation championship Friday morning by defeating teams from five other countries. This marks the third international simulation crown ACOM has earned since 2017.

Third-year students David Cooper, Jacob Gramacy and Anthony Monaco made up the winning team. David and Jacob are doing clerkship rotations at Mobile Infirmary, while Anthony is a Sim Fellow at ACOM.

The competition originated from Portugal with the five teams participating virtually. Each team was given two computer-generated cases and the scoring was done in real time.

John T. Giannini Jr, MD, associate professor of Internal Medicine/director of Simulation, said doing the competition virtually is harder. He said the team also had to adapt to medical practices accepted in Portugal versus the United States.

“I’m proud of the team,” Dr. Giannini said. “This championship speaks to the simulation program and the integral component it plays in ACOM’s curriculum and training. They are seeing the same cases in the simulation lab that they are learning about in the classroom.”

Since 2017, ACOM has won four national championships along with the three international championships.

“We are proud that this success represents the solid and strong foundation of medical education that all of our students receive,” said James C. Jones, DO, FACEP, ACOM Dean. “This is reinforced through their training in the simulation center.”

Dr. Giannini believes the success also demonstrates excellent clinical reasoning skills, which are a big part of effectively going through the difficult virtual Body Interact cases to solve

“A lot of students know about the simulation success at ACOM,” Dr. Giannini said about students being recruited to ACOM. “When they come on campus, they visit the Simulation Center.”

In addition to Dr. Giannini, the simulation program faculty includes Jim Nolen, FNP-C, instructor of Primary Clinical Skills, Dianne Walker, simulation curriculum coordinator, Justin Bonds, simulation technology specialist and four sim fellows.

Competition Photos

ACOM Brings Home Another Sim International Championship2023-02-24T14:49:05-06:00

ACOM Announces Class of 2023 Early Match Results

Match Day is a big step on the path to becoming a medical professional. It signifies the shift to a new phase of medical education – residency.  During residency, students will enter into a multi-year program with intensive training in a chosen specialty. In their final year of medical school, students apply and interview with residency programs where they may want to train in the future. The students and programs rank each other respectively through the National Residency Match Program that runs a computerized algorithm to determine the match. Those match results are revealed, with much anticipation, on Match Day. Certain programs, such as urology and the military, complete their match processes separately and announce those results in advance.

As such, the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) is proud to announce the following early match results from the class of 2023.

The rest of their peers will be matched on Match Day, which is later this semester.

Urology Residency Program Placements

Robyn Schwartz

St. Joseph’s Medical Center Program

Stockton, CA

Adam Thomas

Ascension Macomb-Oakland Hospital

Madison Heights, MI

Navid Leelani (ACOM Class of 2022)

Maimonides Medical Center

Brooklyn, NY

Military Residency Program Placements

Jin ho Oh

Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

Internal Medicine


Bethesda, MD

Justin Pomeroy

Walter Reed National Military Medical Center



Bethesda, MD

Travis Mitchell

Naval Medical Center Portsmouth



Portsmouth, VA

Savannah Sutherland

Keesler Medical Center

Internal Medicine

Air Force

Biloxi, MS

ACOM Announces Class of 2023 Early Match Results2023-02-09T14:43:10-06:00

2023 Wiregrass District Science Fair Winners

4th & 5th Grades

4th & 5th Grade Overall Best in Show Best in Show: Lighter Struts – Noah Creel, Collier Nowell Highlands Elementary
Individual – First Place: 5,6,7,8, How do these cleaning products rate? – Annie Precise – Mulkey Elementary School
Individual – Second Place: False Winter – Hatcher Jones – Slocomb Elementary
Individual – Third Place: Keeping Fresh Fruit – Elizabeth Miller – Mulkey Elementary
Individual – Honorable Mention: Nice and Smooth – Ava Grace Flowers – Kelly Springs Elementary
Individual – Best Overall Presentation: Presentation 5,6,7,8, How do these cleaning products rate? – Annie Precise – Mulkey Elementary
Group – First Place: Lighter Struts – Noah Creel, Collier Nowell – Highlands Elementary
Group – Second Place: Which Produces the Biggest Bubble? – Wallis Segrest, Quinn Bennett, Kylie Reeder – Slocomb Elementary
Group – Third Place: Homopolar Motor – Kannyn Pannell, Ally Singletary – Kelly Springs Elementary
Group – Honorable Mention: Keeping it Cool – Bryant Fulford, Leyton Cotton – Mulkey Elementary
Group – Best Overall Presentation: Lighter Struts – Noah Creel, Collier Nowell – Highlands Elementary
Group – Best Overall Presentation: Which Produces the Biggest Bubble? – Wallis Segrest, Quinn Bennett, Kylie Reeder – Slocomb Elementary

6th – 12th Grades

Best in Show: How can a hydraulic jack lift 6 tons? – Abby Skinner – Houston Academy

Animal, Plant, Computational, and Bioinformatics Sciences

1st: Bug Off – Devin Flowers – Dothan Preparatory Academy
2nd: What Soil Will Grow the Best Plants? – Baylor Downing – Highlands Elementary School
3rd: Color Coding – Mary Kate Gowen – Dothan Preparatory Academy

Behavioral and Social Sciences

1st: Rock-Paper-Scissors: Luck or Skill? – Connor Caputo – Highlands Elementary
2nd: Can a bearded dragon be trained to recognize color or sound? – Liam McDonald – Houston Academy
3rd: Does Music Effect Memory? – Parker Leggett, Myhlen Ortiz – Carver MST

Cell, Molecular, Microbiology & Biochemistry

1st: Teeth vs. Surgary Drinks – Bryleigh Sikora – Kelly Springs
2nd: Should You Drink It? Water testing – Lorali Smith – Houston Academy
3rd: Comparing microorganism growth from water sources – Daijah Denson – Dothan HS


1st: Pucker Up – June Haynie – Highlands
2nd (tie): Which milk type freezes ice cream into the best consistency? – Jane Nichols, Olivia Watkins – Carver MST
2nd (tie): The effect of Paper Type on a paper airplane’s performance – Sophitia Carthon – Carver MST
3rd: The Chemistry of Makeup – Avery Steensland – Houston Academy

Engineering Technology: Statics and Dynamics

1st: How can a hydraulic jack lift 6 tons? – Abby Skinner – Houston Academy
2nd: The Velocitater – Kylie Davis, Judith Palmer, Madelynn Halsell – Carver 9th Grade
3rd: Ocusus – Lachan Owens, Peyton Sidwell – Highlands

Material Sciences & Energy: Sustainable Materials & Design

1st: Is Bounty the real “Quicker Picker Upper?” – Ian Pich – Houston Academy
2nd: Drip, Drip… – Zoe Visser-Palacious, Eloise Helvie – Highlands Elementary
3rd: A Battery that Makes Cents – Levi Sexton Kelly – Springs Elementary

Earth and Environmental Sciences & Environmental Engineering

1st: Keep Blowing – Chynna Clark – Highlands Elementary School
2nd: Trash It or Flush It – Iysa Duddy – Highlands Elementary School
3rd: Bacteria in Water – Britney Cazares – Kelly Spring Elementary School

Medicine, Health & Translational Medical Science

1st: Liquids vs. Tooth Enamel – Gabrielle Saffold – Morris Slingluff Elementary School
2nd: Don’t Get Caught Germy Handed – Catherine Hathaway – Kelly Springs Elementary School
3rd: Sugar Shocker – Ethan Pemberton – Houston Academy

Physics, Astronomy & Mathematics

1st: How fabric denier affects fall time of a parachute – Greyson Marker – Houston Academy
2nd: Effects of Air Pressure on a Ball – Nathan Dowd – Highlands Elementary School
3rd (tie): The Real Veloci Factor – Greer Collins – Houston Academy
3rd (tie): Which dance shoe can you turn best in? – Libby Price – Houston Academy

Robotic Systems & Communication Technology

1st: Keyboard Conundrum – Chad Snell – Highlands Elementary School
2nd: Virtual Reality v. Heart Rate – Eli Daugherty – Highlands Elementary School
3rd: Brush Robot – Jaida Fitzpatrick, Aaliyah Godwin, Skylar Harris – Selma Street Elementary School

Bio-Medical Engineering

1st: Lung Capacity of Sports Players – Ivory McGriff – Houston Academy

Photo Gallery

2023 Wiregrass District Science Fair Winners2023-02-07T17:37:39-06:00

Mark Stewart named director of Marketing for Southeast Health system

Southeast Health is pleased to announce that Mark Stewart has been named director of Marketing for the health system.

In his new duties, Mark will be responsible for marketing the Medical Center, Medical Group, Foundation, Statera and the Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM), as well as continuing to oversee Print Services and the Mail Center.

Mark has more than 32 years of experience in the communications field. He joined the Southeast Health Medical Center team as Public Relations coordinator in 2001. He was named director of Public Relations and Print Services in 2003. He added interim director of Communications and Marketing at ACOM in July 2022 to his Medical Center duties. Prior to that, he was an award-winning journalist and editor with Media General newspapers.

Mark earned his Bachelor of Science degree with a double major in Broadcast Journalism and Public Relations from Troy University in Troy, Alabama. In 2017, he was recognized nationally as a Top Hospital Marketer of the Year by DTC Perspectives, Inc., for a stroke awareness campaign. The award recognizes marketers from hospitals and other healthcare facilities who drive innovation and work towards better patient health outcomes. He is also a past president of the Alabama Hospital Association’s Healthcare Public Relations and Marketing Society.

When not working, Mark enjoys spending time with his family and broadcasting local high school sports on the radio.

Mark Stewart named director of Marketing for Southeast Health system2023-01-26T17:52:12-06:00
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