Beth Spellmeyer


Open Door’s 12-month program provides intensive training in both the clinical complexity of family practice in the safety net setting and training in a high performance, PCMH model for primary care.

The program is specifically intended for new family nurse practitioners and physician assistants who are committed to practice careers as primary care providers (PCP) in the challenging setting of community health centers and other safety net settings.


Applicants must be recent graduates (less than 18 months) from an accredited Masters or DNP program, licensed (CA APRN) and credentialed (FNP-C) or license/credential-eligible as FNP, or CA licensed PA, with a stated commitment to practice as a primary care provider in Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) or other safety net settings upon completion of the residency.

The residency is a full-time, 12-month salaried position with benefits. The program structure includes precepted primary care sessions, speciality rotations, mentored independent clinics, and didactic sessions.

The Nurse Practitioner Residency Program has the following goals:

  • Increase access to quality primary care for underserved and special populations by training family practice nurse practitioners in a FQHC-based residency program that prepares residents for full and autonomous expert care of complex underserved populations across all life cycles and in multiple settings
  • Provide new Nurse Practitioners (NPs) with a depth, breadth, volume and intensity of clinical training necessary to serve as primary care providers in the complex setting of the country’s FQHCs
  • Train new NPs to a model of primary care consistent with the Institute of Medicine (IOM) principles of health care and the needs of vulnerable populations
  • Improve the clinical skills, confidence, productivity, and job satisfaction of new nurse practitioners who choose to work in underserved community settings, as well as contribute to employer satisfaction and workforce retention
  • Increase the number of NPs ready to serve in leadership roles in community health settings.

Our students

Beth Spellmeyer and Gina Silveira

Open Door is extremely proud of our inaugural graduating cohort: Beth Spellmeyer and Gina Silveira.

We are also excited to welcome our incoming cohort for the 2017-18 program. Learn more about them below.

“Having the added support while you get your bearings in a new career and new location is HUGE. I felt so much more confident and comfortable being on my own after completing the residency program in my nursing career. I am super stoked about this program!”
Beth Spellmeyer, 2017 Program Graduate

About the Program

We’re training the residents to Open Door’s model of high-performance health care: advanced access scheduling, planned care, the chronic care model, integrated behavioral health/primary care, team-based, with expert use of health information technology and the electronic health record.

The residency year begins with intensive orientation to Open Door Community Health Centers, the neighborhoods in which the training sites are located, and the health problems of the target population, and includes walking tours of neighborhoods, tours of Open Door sites statewide, meetings with community leaders, technical training on electronic health record, and orientation by our chief medical officer to the responsibilities and privileges of medical staff participation at Open Door.

The residency has four key components:

4 Sessions/week

These are the cornerstone of the residency. In precepted clinics, the NP residents develop their own patient panel while having an expert Open Door primary care provider (MD, APRN or PA) exclusively assigned to them.

2 sessions/week x 1/month

Rotations in areas of high-volume/high-burden/high-risk situations most commonly encountered in the setting of the FQHC. Sample rotations include: Orthopedics, Dermatology, Women’s Health, Pediatrics, Geriatrics, Newborn/nursery, HIV care, Adult Behavioral Health, Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health and Healthcare for the Homeless.

2 sessions/week

During independent clinics, the NP residents work as a member of a team, and see patients at the delegation of the primary care providers, who remain available for consultations. The focus is on the practice of episodic and acute care visits.

1 Session/week

Formal learning sessions on a variety of complex clinical challenges most commonly encountered in FQHCs. The content of the presentations is planned to correspond to the residents’ current clinical experiences.

  • Quality Improvement training: Training on Open Door’s quality improvement model, including clinical microsystems and facilitation as well as leadership development.


The Open Door Nurse Practitioner residency training program provides and ongoing multi-input evaluation component using qualitative and quantitative measures.


Applications for the 2018-19 program open in January 2018 and are due April 15, 2018. Please check in December for further details.

For more information, please contact

Andrea Brubaker, FNPFNP-C, WHNP-BC
Andrea Brubaker, FNPFNP-C, WHNP-BCFamily Nurse Practitioner
Andrea comes to Open Door from Atlanta Georgia, where she recently completed her Master of Science at Emory University. Andrea practices at Eureka Community Health & Wellness Center.
Kristen Lake, MSN, FNP-C
Kristen Lake, MSN, FNP-CFamily Nurse Practitioner
Kristen Lake comes from Massachusetts, where she attended Regis College for her MS. Nursing. Kristen practices at Redwood Community Health Center in Eureka.
Ashley Rice, FNP-C
Ashley Rice, FNP-CFamily Nurse Practitioner
Ashley Rice recently completed her Masters in Nursing at Yale University School of Nursing in New Haven, Connecticut. Ashley practices at Eureka Community Health & Wellness Center.
M. Helene Royster, DNP, FNP-C, PMHNP-BC
M. Helene Royster, DNP, FNP-C, PMHNP-BCFamily Nurse Practitioner
Helene Royster completed her studies at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. Helene practices at Redwood Community Health Center in Eureka.