There is a common theme among the newest cohort of pre-medical students at La Trobe University in Wodonga - they want to practise rural medicine.
The university's rural pathway into medicine provides the stepping stone for students to gain entry into a Doctor of Medicine offered by the University of Melbourne in Shepparton after they complete the three year Bachelor of Biomedical Science.
For 18-year-olds Abigail Malpass and James McConnell, from Wodonga and Benalla respectively, they both agree rural doctors play an important role.
"We had a family friend who, when they were two-years-old, fell out of their high chair and cracked their head on the tiles," Ms Malpass said.
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"They were taken straight to Albury Base Hospital and had to have a piece of their skull cut out to remove the pressure on their brain. If it wasn't for the hospital they would've died.
"I guess that's really stuck in my head to show how important it is to boost rural medicine."
For Mr McConnell his goal is to help with the lack of rural practitioners.
"As a person living in a rural area you can tell we are a bit disadvantaged," he said.
"I ultimately want to have a family and a career in rural Australia and practice medicine regionally."