The Wisconsin Express program held within the Scenic Rivers AHEC region takes place every year in May in both Lancaster and La Crosse. Participants in Wisconsin Express explore intercultural and interprofessional issues they will encounter as future healthcare professionals. The goal of the program is to encourage students, as they begin their professional careers, to develop personal and group strategies to respond to the challenges and opportunities of an increasingly diverse healthcare system and society at large.
This year's La Crosse site hosted six students pursuing various health-focused careers including nursing, physical therapy, physician’s assistant and social work. The group met with a number of local health professionals throughout the southwestern region of Wisconsin. During these interactions, students learned about different disparate groups (Amish, Hispanic, Native American, low-income, people with disabilities) in the area, and experienced a number of different healthcare settings, such as rural, non-profit, and government. The students discussed a number of different health topics such as HPV/AIDS and drug use harm reduction strategies, midwifery, the importance of cultural competence when working with unique populations, and the impact poverty has on health.
Partner sites visited and presenters include: La Crosse Medical Health Science Consortium, Salvation Army, Vernon County UW-Extension, Coulee Cap, La Farge Clinic, Open Door Midwifery, La Crosse County Health Department, Ho-Chunk Nation Healthcare, Tomah VA Medical Center, Brighter Tomorrows, PATCH-Coulee Region, Scenic Bluffs Community Health Center, UW- La Crosse Pride Center, and St. Clare Health Mission.