Community Teacher


Are you interested in becoming a Community Teacher?

Do you want to be a teacher to the next generation of health professionals? Volunteer to become a Community Teacher for health professions students at the University of Minnesota!

The 1Health curriculum teaches students of all health professions the skills necessary to build successful careers in patient-centered, team-based care. Volunteers like YOU are needed to share your real-life experience in health care to help students understand how each profession is a valuable member of a health care team!

If you are interested in becoming a Community Teacher for the 2021-22 academic year, please complete our volunteer application! You can complete the application online or by downloading the form and mailing it to us. 

The 1Health Team is available to answer any additional questions you might have; contact us at [email protected].

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: What are the requirements for participating as a Community Teacher?

A: The Community Teachers program is a volunteer program, seeking willing participants who wish to enrich the learning experience of health professions students through the sharing of their first-hand experiences of managing their chronic condition(s) within the healthcare system. All participants must meet these minimum requirements:

  1. Be 18 years of age or older;
  2. Be available to meet virtually (phone or video call) with a team of 2-4 students, three times per year;
  3. Have at least one chronic medical condition requiring medication;
  4. Be willing to share with the students their perspective and experience navigating the healthcare system with regards to their chronic condition.

Q: How long is the program and what is the time commitment?

A: Community Teachers and students will meet virtually three times throughout the academic year. These visits will occur between October 2021 and April 2022. Visit 1 must occur by Oct. 31, 2021. Your students will reach out to you to schedule your meetings and you will have the opportunity to discuss scheduling with your team and determine what works best for everyone! Each visit will last for approximately 60-75 minutes. Community Teachers will be asked in the spring of each year if you want to volunteer again in the upcoming year.

Q: With how many students will I meet?

A: Each “team” of community teachers and students will consist of one Community Teacher and 3-4 students (depending on final number of student participants). 

Q: What types of students are in my team?

A: For the 2021-22 year, student participants on the TC campus will be from the Medical School, College of Pharmacy, School of Nursing, and Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Health Coaching programs. Student participants in Duluth will be from the college of Pharmacy (UMD) and Occupational Therapy (The College of St. Scholastica). 

Q: How will I meet with students?

A: Due to the challenges that we are all facing because of COVID-19, we want to make sure we are taking measures to ensure the safety of our students and Community Teacher Volunteers. We have made the decision to suspend in-person visits between students and Community Teachers for the upcoming 2021-22 academic year, until further notice. In place of in-person visits, we are asking Community Teachers to be available to conduct their visits virtually by phone or video call (Zoom, Skype, Google Meet, etc.). You and your student team will work together to determine which virtual method works best for everyone!     

Q: What does a visit look like?  How long are the visits?

A: Students will meet with Community Teachers for about 60-75 minutes  per visit. During each visit, students practice basic interviewing skills to understand the Community Teacher’s health care history and current needs, using a prepared visit guidelines document to steer the conversation.

Q: Are the students able to give me health advice?

A: NO.  The students do not provide health care advice, but rather focus on learning how to work in a health care team, including understanding which questions to ask so they can work collaboratively in understanding the needs of the patient.

Q: Are the students connected with my primary care provider?  Do they have access to my medical records?

A: NO.  This volunteer experience is coordinated through the University of Minnesota's 1Health Interprofessional Education Curriculum, which teaches students from health professional programs the skills necessary to work with other health professions as they continue in their educational and professional development.  The students have no connection to patient volunteers’ primary care providers, nor do the students have access to your medical records.  Students will ask the patient volunteers basic interview questions and obtain a basic medical history from the patient at the initial home visit.

Q: Is there any training I will need to complete to become a Community Teacher?

A: All Community Teachers will receive basic information about the program and expectations about the role prior to meeting with the students.  The 1Health Team is available to answer any additional questions you might have; contact us at [email protected].

Q: How do I apply?

A: Please complete the online application or, to apply by mail, download and fill out the paper application and send it to us one of two ways:

  1. US Mail:
    • University of Minnesota -1Health Community Teacher Program, MMC 296 Mayo, 8296B Campus Delivery Code, 516 Delaware Street SE Minneapolis, MN 55455
  2. E-mail: [email protected]

Upon receipt of the application, the 1Health Team will review your information and contact you with next steps, usually within two weeks.

Q: I have friends who want to volunteer in the Community Teacher program.  How can I get your information to them?

A: Current Community Teachers are our greatest recruiters!  We welcome your involvement in helping to recruit new volunteers!  Encourage your friends to apply using one of our two application methods mentioned at the top of this page. Additionally, please share the appropriate flyer with anyone who might be interested!

Questions about the CT program? Contact the 1Health Team by email at [email protected]