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Healthcare Workforce and Community Colleges

This past Wednesday (August 8th) the Healthcare Workforce COI held a session to discuss the community colleges. Community colleges compose a sizable part of the region’s full membership.

Community college students come from very diverse often non-traditional backgrounds, their educational and career paths may be stop and go. Enrollment is growing as graduating students and unemployed workers seek affordable educational alternatives. The promise of increased job availability, demand for enrollment in community college programs will continue to grow.

Community Colleges offer programs in a wide variety of academic health sciences programs: nursing programs are the majority but other programs abound like dental hygiene, occupational therapy, sonography and radiography, and respiratory therapy.

Community colleges also have a large certificate programs for areas like dental assisting, healthcare interpreter, phlebotomy, dialysis, imaging. Community colleges are also at the center of HealthIT related programs that train students in practice workflow and redesign, implementation management and support, and software support and training.

Librarians at community colleges can specialize in the health sciences but also serve a broader set of academic programs and departments throughout their institutions.

By concentrating on community colleges, the health care workforce COI will examine how librarians provide particular services to health sciences students and faculty while attending to other academic programs and responsibilities. As a learning community it will be a forum for librarians to learn from each other. What are the best resources? How to keep up to date? what are useful standards or competencies?

The healthcare workforce COI can gather formally or informally to exchange ideas, plan and put on distance based and in-person programs, recruit speakers. Pat Gorman of the Community College of Rhode Island is the COI Leader and has heard from several community college and other interested librarians; she is looking forward to hearing from others and move the COI’s ideas forward.

Contact Pat at

Link to Web Session Presentation

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