Welcome to WWAMI Medical Education Program (WWAMI) at the University of Idaho.
For nearly 50 years, the partnership between the University of Washington School of Medicine (UWSOM) and the University of Idaho has provided Idaho students a way to attend a world-class medical program on the U of I campus for the cost of in-state tuition. In 2020, U.S. News & World Report ranked UWSOM No. 2 nationally in primary care and family medicine. For more than 25 consecutive years, until 2018, UWSOM’s rural medicine training program ranked No. 1; this category has not been ranked since.
Idaho WWAMI is the only publicly funded medical education program in the state. Each year, the Idaho Legislature helps support a class of 40 new WWAMI students, all of whom are from Idaho. I couldn’t be prouder to personally welcome each one of these future physicians when they begin their medical career on the University of Idaho’s campus.
This is an outstanding place to study, work and conduct research. Our faculty include innovative scientists and dedicated physicians whose teamwork models translational teaching by having bench and bedside experts working together. They are also dedicated teachers and mentors who care about education and foster an environment that helps students grow by actively participating in research and clinical experiences throughout the WWAMI region.
Unfortunately, Idaho is facing a critical physician shortage. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, the state ranks 49th for practicing physicians per capita. As the fastest growing state in the U.S., Idaho WWAMI is key to building the physician pipeline to ease the state’s shortage of primary care physicians, particularly in rural and frontier areas.
Idaho WWAMI strives to enhance the scientific and medical assets of our state to embodying U of I’s land-grant mission. We support programs, such as ECHO Idaho and North Idaho AHEC, that emphasize outreach activities and help strengthen Idaho’s communities by linking academic leadership with applied expertise.
Director, WWAMI Medical Education Program
Jeff Seegmiller joined Idaho WWAMI as the director for the Foundations Phase at the University of Idaho in 2014. In this capacity, Seegmiller serves as an assistant dean within the University of Washington School of Medicine (UWSOM) and is involved with student progress, curriculum and regional program committees. He is also an affiliate faculty in UWSOM’s Department of Biological Structure and is a tenured professor in the Department of Movement Sciences at the University of Idaho.
Seegmiller has more than 20 years of experience teaching and researching musculoskeletal pathologies and has taught and chaired musculoskeletal anatomy for the WWAMI program. He was instrumental in developing a master’s and doctoral program that has gained national recognition; the U of I was first in the nation to develop a Doctor of Athletic Training Program.
Seegmiller earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Brigham Young University and Master of Science and Doctor of Education degrees from Illinois State University specializing in biomechanics. He began his career preventing, treating and rehabilitating musculoskeletal injuries as a certified athletic trainer with numerous clinics, schools and teams. He served as the graduate program director at Ohio University where he developed and directed the master’s and doctoral education programs and established outreach clinical services to rural communities.
Of WWAMI, Seegmiller says, ‘Through state-of-the-art medical education, research that improves patient care and educational programming that connects rural and specialist healthcare providers, Idaho WWAMI strengthens communities throughout our state.”