This was the question posed by an anonymous poster in the comments section of the related post. I will try to explain it here...
So. The point of the NHSC is to get med/pa/cnm/fnp students to work in economically depressed areas (which they call Health Professional Shortage Areas or HPSAs) which are in critical need of providers. The vast majority of professional students are middle to upper class non-minorities that do not come from these areas. Keeping that in mind, let's break down a question that is on this year's application/personality assessment:
Choose A or B:
A. "I would like to work in a community where the people and activities are different than those I grew up with."
B. "I would like to work in a community where the people and activities are the same as those I grew up with."
When advised about how to fill out this application (by people who were successfully awarded the scholarship) I was told "the answers they want to hear are obvious." I believe the answers are obvious to the majority of people filling out this questionnaire because the majority of people filling it out (students in professional schools) are NOT from HPSAs and they are supposed to be answering questions in a way that indicates that they are committed to working in these HPSAs...and therefore the "obvious" answer is "A" because if you want to work in the kind of community you (being the med student who's filling it out) grew up in, chances are that community doesn't qualify as an HPSA. Get it?
So, what happens if you happen to be one of the very, very few people who actually grew up in an HPSA? Technically, you should be circling "B" because the area you want to serve is actually the same kind of area you grew up in...but I don't think scantron-style reading of these bubble assessments will be taking that into consideration, which makes me wonder if someone in this situation shouldn't be answering as the typical professional school student, or themselves...and *this* is why I feel the assessment is culturally biased.
But anyway, I will tell you that I have already resolved all of this in my mind and am no longer really thinking about it. I am just going to fill out the form truthfully, and let the universe handle the rest.