Medical Student Externship Provides
Hands-on Family Medicine Experience  APPLY BY FEB. 1 »

Each year, Family Medicine Foundation of Michigan selects one student member of MAFP to participate in a four- to six-week family medicine externship tailored to his/her interests. The goal of the experience is to stimulate interest in selecting a career as a Michigan family physician and/or pursuing research opportunities in Family Medicine.

Interested students, working with their medical school to identify a Family Medicine mentor/preceptor and plan the externship, should submit an application to Family Medicine Foundation of Michigan no later than Feb. 1.

The selected extern will receive a $2,000 stipend after submitting an article and journal of the experience. The family medicine mentor will receive a $500 stipend. Funding is provided by matching grants from Family Medicine Foundation of Michigan and AAFP Foundation.


  • Full-time student at an accredited medical school in Michigan
  • MAFP student member
  • Interest in exploring a career as a family physician
  • Mentor must be a family physician member of MAFP in good standing

2021 Extern: Anneliese Petersen

“I had the privilege of listening to stories, sharing jokes, joining in concerns, and truly building friendships with those on the street. This month reminded me of why I am pursuing medicine, and why I have chosen family practice."

2020 Externs: Ameen Suhrawardy & Eli Benchell Eisman

“Seeing real-life presentations of clinical diseases and conditions is the best way to fully connect and understand illnesses. I got to see the work of family physicians in the outpatient setting on a day-to-day basis. I learned from their history-taking strategies, clinical decision making, patient relationship building, and from their own career trajectories out of medical school. I observed how family physicians manage long-term chronic conditions and integrate lifestyle and holistic solutions into their treatment. I participated in clinical management alongside physicians, reviewing patient history, medications, consult notes, lab results, and much more.” - Ameen Suhrawardy

“The externship taught me to understand that when I see a patient, regardless of the setting, that what I am getting is just a snapshot of what’s going on in their life. That by taking the time to meet someone where they are in that moment, and offer holistic and contextualized care, that’s when we can see real healing." - Eli Benchell Eisman, PhD 

2019 Extern: Kassy Kneen

“My experience during the externship was phenomenal. I had the chance to see how family medicine operates, both on the inpatient and outpatient teams. I was able to practice my patient interviewing skills and presentation to multiple physicians, which as a valuable experience for me. I was also able to practice the physical exam techniques that I learned in my first year of medical school that I hadn't been able to practice otherwise. I saw a wide variety of cases, from viral illness to mental health concerns."

2018 Extern: Michelle Fedorowicz

“I was able to expand my clinical experience exponentially from my first year of medical school. My days varied greatly in the family medicine clinic, as I spent most every day with a different physician—both attendings and residents. There was never a patient or hour that went by where teaching wasn’t going on, whether from the physician to myself, the physician to the patient, or the attending to the resident. It was really special to be a part of this, and to have such an open learning environment to practice my own skills and learn from others.”

2017 Extern: Adam McMillan

"This externship gave me the best clinical learning experience that I have had so far in medical school. I was happily surprised to be part of many cases of continuity of care with patients who had come in early during my externship and then followed up [with them] later…sometimes twice. I look forward to practicing in the field and I’m excited for the future of family medicine, for the goal of making health primary through increasing patient-centered primary care." Adam is a 2020 MD candidate at Wayne State University School of Medicine and matched to Spectrum Family Medicine Residency in Grand Rapids.

2016 Extern: Blake Arthurs

“This externship was hands down the best experience I could have hoped for. This past year of medical school I had a lot of doubts. I wondered if I had made a mistake, if this was really what I wanted to do, if all of this schooling would be worth it. But I can now confidently say that my experience in family medicine this summer decidedly erased all those doubts. With the opportunity provided by the MAFP Foundation and AAFP Foundation and the generosity of Dr. Yaekle and the entire Beaumont team, I was able to see exactly what I want my future career to look like. I saw that in family medicine a strong doctor-patient relationship is above all else.” Dr. Arthurs is now a resident at University of Michigan Family Medicine Residency.

2013 Extern: Melissa Jennings

"My externship was eye opening; and, in retrospect, it was my first look into what makes family medicine so special to me: a broad scope of practice and meaningful, long-term relationships with patients. Because of the externship, I was able to envision a future for myself in family medicine. From seeing patients in clinic, to rounding on the inpatient medicine service, to observing my first delivery, the month was full of new experiences. I gained clinical knowledge, as well as a better understanding of what day-to-day life is like in Family Medicine. I encourage any medical student to apply for this opportunity. Even if family medicine isn't on your radar, either, you may find like I did that it's the perfect fit for you." Dr. Jennings is now a family physician practicing in Michigan.

Please note: If the matching grand funds are not used in the award year they must be returned to the AAFP Foundation and Family Medicine Foundation of Michigan.