North Eastern Montana AHEC

Regional Area Health Education Center

Connecting students to healthcare careers, professionals to communities and communities to better health.

The North Eastern Montana Area Health Education Center (AHEC) serves fifteen counties in the north eastern region of Montana and is one of five regional offices in the state.  The North Eastern AHEC is a grant funded program that is affiliated with Montana Health Network.

The mission of the office is to recruit, train and retain a health professions work force committed to rural and underserved populations.

We work with students of all ages, encouraging them to pursue careers in the high skill, high pay and high demand healthcare industry.  Our programming provides students with career exploration resources and opportunities to further their healthcare knowledge.  We also work with over 65 medical facilities statewide as well as colleges and universities across the country to help place interested health professionals throughout Montana.

Our Mission

The Montana AHEC’s (Area Health Education Center) mission is to improve the supply and distribution of healthcare professionals, with an emphasis on primary care, through community and academic educational partnerships in order to increase the access to quality healthcare. We work to connect students to healthcare careers, professionals to communities, and communities to better health.

To fulfill our mission, we focus on three key areas:

Recruitment and Retention of qualified healthcare professionals — we promote Montana's job opportunities through participation at local, regional and national career fairs and through the utilization of online web postings.
Pipeline programs for students in grades 9-12 to generate interest in healthcare professions — we currently work with 3 pipeline programs in our office. REACH (Research and Explore Awesome Careers in Healthcare) is a day-long camp for high school students to explore different careers in the medical field. HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) is a student organization that allows for exploration in health careers while building leadership and teamwork skills. MedStart summer camps focuses on rural, minority, low-income and first generation college-bound students and provides an introduction to health science and college life.
Continuing Education and retention programs for practicing healthcare professionals — we host online continuing education webinars for rural providers, sponsorships and financial support for students interested in medical careers as well as continuing education for Montana healthcare professionals.

Our Programs

North Eastern Montana AHEC Staff

Christine Williams

NE MT AHEC Director and MHN Director of Education
519 Pleasant
Miles City, MT 59301
Phone: (406) 234-1424
Fax: (406) 234-1423

Dorie Kenitzer

NE MT AHEC Career Coach
519 Pleasant
Miles City, MT 59301
Phone: 4062341424
Fax: 4062341423



The AHEC program was developed by Congress in 1971 to recruit, train and retain a health professions workforce committed to underserved populations. Grants to fund AHECs were always made to the medical school(s) within the states. The only exception to this has been the University of Washington School of Medicine (UWSM). In this case, the federal government provided funding to the UWSM to start AHECs in Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho, all partners in the Regional WWAMI program.


On October 1, 1985, the Montana AHEC was implemented. The program office for the Montana Area Health Education Center/Office of Rural Health is located on the campus of Montana State University in Bozeman.


In September 2007, under new rules allowing Colleges of Nursing to apply for AHEC grants, the MSU College of Nursing applied and was awarded a grant to establish four regional AHEC offices in Montana in addition to the Bozeman Program Office. In year one, the South Central Regional office was set up in Dillon under the auspices of the Montana Hospital Association and the Eastern Regional AHEC office was set up in Billings at RiverStone Health. The Western office was established in September of 2008 under the College of Health Professions at The University of Montana. The North Central regional office was opened January 2010, also under the Montana Hospital Association.


The addition of the NE MT AHEC Region based in Miles City marks the fifth AHEC region in Montana. The NE MT AHEC office will serve all of the communities and healthcare facilities in fifteen counties in North Eastern and Southeastern Montana. The office is located and sponsored by Montana Health Network. Montana Health Network is a consortium of healthcare needed to make healthcare more stable, efficient and cost effective.


Encourage youth from underserved areas/populations to pursue health careers.
Encourage health professionals to select employment in rural/underserved areas.
Provide continuing education/CME to health professionals employed in rural/underserved areas.