Rural Health Careers Camp - NIU - College of Health & Human Sciences

About the College

Rural Health Careers Camp

The purpose of the Rural Health Careers Camp is to provide rural high school students with a hands-on learning experience about different health professions careers, and to show them the opportunities available in health professions. Students will also receive information about education and training, academic requirements, financial aid, and campus life. The faculty for the camp is comprised of health professions faculty, health professionals currently in practice, and health professions college students.

If you have any questions about the camp, please contact

Eligible Students

Current rural high school freshmen, sophomores, and juniors with a priority given to freshmen and sophomores from the 14 counties of the Northern Illinois Area Health Education Center (AHEC) Region are eligible to apply to the camp. Counties included are: Boone, Bureau, Carroll, DeKalb, Henderson, Henry, JoDaviess, Knox, LaSalle, Lee, Mercer, Ogle, Putnam, Rock Island, Stark, Stephenson, Warren, Whiteside, and Winnebago. Eligible students should be from a rural area and have a budding interest in health professions.

How are students chosen?

Students are chosen for the camp based on their year in school, academic standing and their rurality (as defined geographically by the residential address and USDA standards). If the camp does not fill, we will consider taking students from urban areas. 

Why should I go?

If you are chosen to attend this camp, you will have an exciting chance to meet other students from Northern Illinois who also want to learn more about health careers. This will be a great opportunity for you to gain more knowledge of areas you might want to pursue, meet some new people, and find out what being a college student is really like! 

What activities are planned?

Campers will stay in a dormitory on campus for 3 days and 2 nights and will experience what living on campus is like, including meals served in the dorm dining room.  All three days of the camp are packed with activities with health care related themes.  Campers will visit "hands-on" labs in fields including Clinical Laboratory Science, Physical Therapy, Speech/Language and Pathology, Dietetics and Nutrition, Nursing, and Family and Adolescent counseling; and participate in a Disease Detective game (Epidemiology).  Local field trips are sometimes planned, such as our 2011 trip to Kishwaukee Hospital.  Fun evening activities will include volleyball, basketball and bean bag toss games in Anderson Gym and an "Amazing Race" game in which all campers will participate in a team based race in which they will complete health related tasks to progress through each leg of the race to the finish.


The camp costs $50 which includes two nights rooming, 3 days meals, activities, t-shirts, backpacks and much more!  Scholarships are available for families experiencing financial hardships.


For Rural Health Application and other information contact Vicki Weidenbacher-Hoper at (815) 395-5854 or via e-mail at

Completed applications should be sent to: 
Vicki Weidenbacher-Hoper
University of Illinois/NCRHP
1601 Parkview Avenue
Rockford, IL 61107