Thursday, December 22, 2011 (Bronx, NY) — On December 20, 2011, Hostos Community College welcomed representatives from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to the campus, where they saw for themselves the impact of the Allied Health Career Pipeline Program on students. This program was made possible by a five-year, $7.4 million federal grant from the Health Profession Opportunity Grants program; the funds are provided by the Administration for Children and Families under HHS.
The visitors from HHS were George Sheldon, Acting Assistant Secretary; Diann Dawson, Director of the Office of Regional Operations; Joyce Thomas, Regional Administrator, Region II, New York, NY; and Dr. Jaime Torres, Regional Director, Region II, and founder of Latinos for National Health Insurance, a national coalition working for equality in healthcare.
Hostos President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez welcomed the opportunity to update the HHS guests on the program’s progress and achievements. “Though relatively new, Hostos’ Allied Health Career Pipeline Program has already had an impact on the lives of students by turning remote possibilities into educational and professional opportunities.”
After being greeted by Hostos administrators, faculty, and staff, the HHS guests visited with several Allied Health students who are currently preparing for their Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) exams. The students told their individual stories, mentioning personal challenges and the particular pathways that brought them to the program. Although each story was different, all the students affirmed that they probably would not have had the opportunity to follow this career path if the Pipeline Program had not existed. When asked what the program meant to them, the students spoke of its “life changing” impact, the possibility of a “better future” for themselves and their families, and, in the simplest of terms, “hope.” In reply, Mr. Sheldon told the students, “You’re providing hope to a lot of other people.”
Following the visit with the CNA students, Dr. Carlos Molina, Vice President of the Division of Continuing Education and Workforce Development, took the HHS representatives on a campus tour. Faculty, staff, and students from the Allied Health Program then met with the visitors to share information about fundamentals of the program, such as its “person-centered care” approach to patients, the mutually beneficial collaborative partnerships with local healthcare organizations and businesses, and the opportunities that await students after completing the program.
The Allied Health Career Pipeline Program
The Allied Health Career Pipeline Program was implemented in 2010 as a result of a five-year, $7.4 million federal grant awarded by HHS to subsidize the training of individuals to become Certified Nursing Assistants, Pharmacy Technicians, and other allied health professionals. This program is offered to public assistance recipients and low-income individuals who cannot afford to pay for the training needed to obtain jobs in these specialized fields.
About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College, part of The City University of New York system, was founded in 1968. It is located in the South Bronx. In addition to associate degree programs that facilitate easy transfer to CUNY’s four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions, Hostos also offers courses for professional development and certificate-bearing workforce training programs through its award-winning Continuing Education and Workforce Development Division. In four decades, Hostos has grown from a charter class of 623 in the fall of 1970 to its current enrollment of over 7,000 students, with an additional 12,000 being served through the Continuing Education and Workforce Development Division. For more news and stories about Hostos Community College, visit www.hostos.cuny.edu.
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