UNC School of Medicine Asheville

Information about Longitudinal Integrated Curriculum


  • UNC School of Medicine Asheville campus opened in July 2009 with the support of UNC School of Medicine, Mission Health, and Mountain AHEC. Beginning with four students, we expanded to 20 students in 2014, and will have 24 students in 2017.
  • The foundation of this program, a longitudinal integrated curriculum,  is similar to the “Cambridge Model.” In 2004, Harvard restructured their third year clerkships to place a cohort of students in outpatient settings for the majority of their curriculum, which allowed students to follow “their patients” in all health care settings. 
  • Longitudinal integrated clerkships (LICs) have the following core principles:
    Relationship and continuity of the four Ps:
    • Preceptors




  • Active, hands on roles with patients
    • Flexibility of unscheduled half days for self directed learning

    The Asheville community, with its robust primary care services and diverse specialty practice settings, provides an ideal setting for this type of curriculum. (Reference: Latessa R, Beaty N, Royal K, Colvin G, Pathman DE, Heck J. Academic Outcomes of a Community-Based Longitudinal Integrated Clerkships Program. Med Teach 2015; 37(9):862-867). 


    • The longitudinal curriculum utilizes a cadre of dedicated teachers and a greater reliance on outpatient teaching. Students have more exposure to experienced practicing physicians and a much greater likelihood of seeing the same patients over an extended period of time and through the continuum of care.
    • The fourth year reverts to block schedules and presents opportunities for rotations in rural WNC, as well as Chapel Hill or across the state, nation, or internationally. 

      What students say about the program:

      Ray Antonelli

      Greetings!  My name is Ray and I am a UNC medical student with the incredibly good fortune of spending my 3rd year in the Asheville longitudinal program.  I grew up in the tiny town of Pittsboro, North Carolina then studied biochemistry and Spanish at NC State.  After college, I took two years "off" to work for the US Environmental Protection Agency, where I studied the effects of drinking water pollutants on human health.  My time at the EPA sparked an interest in prevention and population health, and with that mindset I continued with my plan to attend medical school.    

      Ray Antonelli

      Being from a small town, I feel totally at home here in the Asheville program.  We are able to build meaningful long-term relationships with classmates, faculty, staff, and patients in a way that traditional third year students cannot.  This affords us a tremendous number of opportunities to learn from our experiences and to personalize our schedules to fit our interests.  On top of all of that, Asheville is an amazing place to be a student  with countless opportunities to be active and have fun.        

      The attached picture tells a lot about who I am; I smile often, I love eating (there is SO much great eating in Asheville!!!!), and my artistic abilities are, well, completely unimproved from the time this picture was taken. :) A couple other fun facts: I have biked across the United States and I earned my pilot's license when I was 17.