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Frontier Community College, in partnership with Fairfield Memorial Hospital, has an exciting new project coming in the spring of 2013.  A Bridge Program to Healthcare Careers has been developed to assist adults with limited basic skills or limited English skills to enter and succeed in credit-bearing postsecondary education and training leading to career-path employment in high demand, middle and high-skilled jobs. 

One of the goals of a Bridge program is to fill the gap between individuals with limited basic skills into postsecondary education and career-path employment.  There are three core components of a Bridge program, and they are Basic Skill Instruction, Career Development, and Transition Services. Basic Skill Instruction includes focus on important reading, math, and language skills by using industry work knowledge and vocabulary.  Career Development includes job shadowing, career planning and understanding the world of work by improving the student’s basic skills. Transition Services provide students with the information and assistance they need to successfully navigate the process of moving from adult education, or secondary coursework to credit or occupational programs. Transition Services may also include academic advising, tutoring, study skills, coaching, and referring individuals to support services such as transportation or child care.

“By collaborating with Frontier Community College in this program the South East Illinois Area Health Education Center (SEI-AHEC) is able to fulfill its mission to inspire and support students’ educational experiences and interests in health professions,” stated Beth Wilson, RN, BSN, SANE, Director of SEI-AHEC.

In order for the Bridge Program, which is focusing on healthcare, to be successful, Frontier Community College called on Fairfield Memorial Hospital as a long-standing, active, and supportive partner who committed to this program through the grant funds provided by SEI-AHEC.  FCC has partnered with FMH by utilizing Beth Wilson, RN, BSN, SANE, Director of SEI-AHEC, as the course instructor. Beth is a seasoned nurse who currently leads instruction for the dual credit Health Careers Program for Fairfield Memorial Hospital.  Beth also provides clinical instruction for Certified Nursing Assistants through the Health Careers Program. The pilot Bridge Program will feature a three semester hour adult education class in math, reading, and English, as it relates to healthcare. Beth will be lead instructor for a two semester hour course that has total emphasis on healthcare.

“Fairfield Memorial Hospital is humbled to assist by providing the instructor for this course and an additional $1,000, through our SEI-AHEC grant program to help the pilot Bridge Program.  We hope the additional funds will allow Frontier Community College the ability to assist students with travel and childcare in order to encourage participation,” stated Katherine Bunting, Ph.D., FMH CEO. 

“FCC can educate and help students prepare to become part of a highly-skilled, well-qualified workforce only if we have industry support and input. Therefore, the partnership with potential employers in the field, such as Fairfield Memorial Hospital, is crucial to the success of the program.  Ultimately when students are finished with their education at Frontier Community College, they would be prime candidates for employment with local organizations.  If we all work together, our community will benefit from this training that will provide highly skilled and well qualified employees.  We are excited to again partner with Fairfield Memorial Hospital and receive assistance from Beth Wilson, Director of SEI-AHEC as our lead instructor, in order to provide the finest Bridge Program possible,” stated Jervaise McDaniel, Ed.D, FCC Associate Dean.

For more information regarding the Bridge Program for Healthcare, call Frontier Community College at 618-842-3711 and asked to be connected with a Healthcare Bridge team member.  Team members are Jervaise McDaniel, Cindy Foerster, and Stacey Legg.  

Pictured is Beth Wilson, RN, BSN, SANE, Director of SEI-AHEC presenting a check for the new Health Careers Bridge Program to Jervaise McDaniel, Ed.D., FCC Associate Dean.

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