• 59°
franklin county times
CONTRIBUTED Austin Martindale, of Russellville, takes a moment with his parents, Robert and Mary Martindale, after receiving his first white coat and stethoscope during a matriculation ceremony at East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika. Austin was also the recipient of a $500 stipend from Alfa.

Local student receives $500 book stipend from Alfa

One Russellville alum’s higher education burden is $500 lighter after the awarding of a book stipend from Alfa and the Alabama Farmers Federation.

Austin Martindale, a 2013 graduate of Russellville High School, was among 11 students to benefit from the support of Alfa and the Alabama Farmers Federation, as a result of being involved in the Rural Medicine Program of the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine.

“The RMP program is a five-year medical school program tailored toward medical students from small town Alabama who might have an interest in returning to underserved areas of the state,” Martindale explained. “The first year of the program involves a ‘pre-matriculation year’ at Auburn University, in which we take classes that the administration and faculty of UAB feel will help us excel in the summer when we move to Birmingham.”

Next, Martindale said, is the conventional medical school path, “but we already know that our third and fourth year clinical years will be in Huntsville.

“As far as my where I end up after medical school, I have no idea. I am just taking it day by day, and God will put me where he feels I need to be.”

The $500 per student stipend was presented Aug. 22 during a matriculation ceremony at the East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, where students also received their first clinical white coats and stethoscopes.

“I have always been interested in medicine from a young age, but I was interested in many different fields growing up,” Martindale said. “I really had to sit down and think about what I wanted in life. I knew I wanted a career in which I would be mentally-stimulated and essentially be a student the rest of my life. I love to learn. I also wanted a career in which I get to interact with people on a daily basis and not be cramped behind a desk.”

Martin said the ability to combine those two career goals with a desire to impact people’s lives daily made the choice to pursue a career in medicine “a no brainer.”

Martindale completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Alabama, earning a Bachelor of Science in biology.

“Undergrad was challenging in the beginning. Many of the sciences I was thrown into I had never been exposed to during my high school years – physics, for example,” he said. “Most of the professors expected students to come in with a strong foundation.”

Going from Tuscaloosa to Auburn for the RMP has been a transition for the Crimson Tide fan – complete with plenty of ribbing from Bama and Auburn fans alike.

“I just grin and bear it for the most part,” Martindale said. “Everyone jokes with me about it, and I get a few dirty looks when I wear my Bama attire, but I’ll be saying Roll Tide until the day I die.”

Martindale said he and his fellow students found out just prior to the ceremony that they would receive the book stipend, which Alfa has been providing to students since 2006. “Every little bit helps, and I am very thankful to have received it,” he said.

Martindale is the son of Robert and Mary Martindale, who are a psychometrist with Huntsville City Schools and a Russellville City Schools substitute teacher, respectively. They reside in Russellville.

Franklin County

Republican primary run-off election for county commission seats takes place April 16

News

Historic Roxy Theatre celebrates 75th Anniversary with upcoming entertainment

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Veteran Spotlight – Mark Dunbar

Franklin County

Franklin County makes seven drug trafficking arrests

Galleries

Why Knot car show cruises into downtown Russellville

News

Get free weather radio at VFDs

Franklin County

PCHS FBLA hosts Little Miss Dream Girl Pageant

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Veteran Spotlight – Johnnie Pounders

Features

Sam Warf: From Tennessee to the White House and beyond

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Veteran Spotlight – Mousey Brown

News

Russellville First Baptist Church receives historical marker

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Meeting a higher standard – Russellville High School JROTC

News

RCS BOE announces new superintendent  

News

Miss Dream Girl Pageant names winners

Franklin County

First Metro Bank hosts FAME Girls’ Ranch donation drive

News

PCHS holds annual Shelby Grissom Memorial Fashion Show

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: VFW Post 5184 – ‘No One Does More For Veterans’

Features

Supporting students’ futures

Features

Red Bay Garden Club discusses amaryllis planting

Franklin County

UA announces local students for fall 2023 President’s, Dean’s, graduation lists

News

School news

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Veteran Spotlight – Troy Oliver

Franklin County

Appropriations bill passes, allots more than $3 million for new Russellville library/multipurpose center 

Franklin County

Franklin County Cattlemen’s Association names Cattleman of the Year 

x