About Us

Who We Are:

RSHS is a 501(c)3 non-profit independent organization formed in 2013 to create free clinics for underserved and high-risk students in two existing facilities in the Rochester Public School system.

We are a multiagency, multidisciplinary collaborative effort comprised of volunteer members from the community, Mayo Clinic, Olmsted County Public Health, Olmsted Medical Center, Rochester Public Schools and Winona State University. Olmsted County Public Health and Zumbro Valley Mental Health participate in an advisory capacity as well.



The mission of Rochester Students’ Health Services is to promote self-sufficiency in managing personal health among RSHS learners by:

  • Providing health education
  • Providing free health services at RSHS clinics
  • Helping learners identify and access sources for health insurance and primary health care
  • Collaborating with other health care and service providers in the schools and community to assist with coordination of care




This is a grass roots effort to provide multidisciplinary health care to Rochester students experiencing health disparities, which then interfere with their academic goals and outcomes. We seek to improve graduation rates and overall health by reducing these health morbidities through health promotion, nursing care, and medical and mental health treatment and referrals. RSHS is not a medical home or primary care base, but facilitates connection with existing ones in the community for its patients/students.

Hawthorne Health Services (HHS) has been open since 2006 and came under the RSHS umbrella in 2013 due to similar missions and capabilities.

HHS serves adult learners in the adult literacy program who are uninsured or underinsured and who have difficulties with access to healthcare. In 2012, there were 958 patients from the Rochester area and 45 different countries.

The Hawthorne Education Center (HEC) serves over 2,000 students a year with student ages ranging from 16 to over 80 years of age. HEC has several educational programs including ESL, GED preparation, college preparation, job skill training, and several other educational programs. With a poverty rate of 85%, along with a high rate of uninsured students, HHS works to keep learners healthy and in classes to ensure that all learners continue their education.

ALC Clinic opened in November 2013, staffed by Registered Nurses.  Medical providers (medical doctors and nurse practitioners) began staffing the clinic on January 7, 2014, increasing the clinic’s ability to serve its student population.

The ALC has 400 students in grades 7-12 who are at risk for academic failure. The students have significant needs in nursing care, mental health care, episodic medical care, reproductive health care, substance abuse treatment and dental care. In 2013, 62 students were homeless, 17 have infants of their own, some have probation officers, and many are employed while attending school.


Population Served:

ALC: All students and their children have access to clinic services at no charge to the student or the school district.

HEC: All students, their children, and family members without access to healthcare are eligible to receive clinic services at no charge to the student or the school district.


Board of Directors:

President: Shirley Johnson MS APRN CNP

Vice President: Gordon Ziebart, Director Alternative Learning Center

Secretary: Marty Aleman MA PHN

Treasurer: Terra O’Brien


Valeria Cristiani MD

Rachel Herman MS APRN CNP

Julie Nigon, Director Hawthorne Education Center

Mike O’Brien MD

Gayle Olsen MS APRN CNP

Tony Smithson MD, JD