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  • HPOG Success Story: Juanita at Worksystems, Inc.

    Published: June 21, 2019
    Tough people have the ability to outlast hard times. Juanita was facing challenging times when she found out about the Worksystems Inc.’s Health Careers NW program, funded by Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG), in her home of Portland, Oregon. Her curiosity about the program turned into a relationship that fostered a new sense of hope and career opportunities.
  • HPOG Success Story: Kelli at Great Plains Tribal Chairman's Health Board

    Published: June 21, 2019
    Inspiration comes in many forms. For Kelli, it came from her three young children. A single mother, living on a reservation, Kelli worked hard to keep up with her own children during the fast-paced digital age, but she had very little opportunity for education or job training. This put strain on her ability to be a stable role model and provider for her family. She longed for a fulfilling career that provided job security and the opportunity to have dinner with her children without rushing off to the next job. The Yankton Sioux Tribe’s Master Health Director introduced Kelli to the HPOG Pathways to Healthcare Professions (PHP) program. After reaching out by phone and discussing her situation and long-term goals, she decided to apply for Certified Professional Coder (CPC) courses.
  • HPOG Success Story: Mohammed at Volunteers of America Texas

    Published: June 21, 2019
    Mohammed came to the United States at only 12 years old. His parents immigrated to America with the hope of providing a better life for their family. Poverty was a broad challenge in their native India. Even as a child he knew he had bigger dreams than the hurdles he would encounter in his life. The melting pot of Houston, Texas came as a culture shock to Mohammed and his family. It took him two full years to overcome the language barrier. Even though he had problems communicating with his peers due to his strong accent, Mohammed enjoyed reading and language arts, but his favorite subjects were math and science. He was fascinated with the human body and its interworking. Frustrations arose after graduation from high school. Mohammed worried about how he would provide for his family while furthering his education. He made a personal sacrifice, and chose caring for his loved ones over going to school. Fortunately, just as he was thinking of giving up, an HPOG coach from Volunteers of America Texas changed his path. He was working at unsatisfying, minimum wage jobs for the first few years out of high school. He knew he wanted more but needed to work full time to cover the cost of school and take care of his household. The HPOG coach told him the integrated service model could provide the resources and support he needed. The hope of acceptance turned into overwhelming joy for Mohammed and his parents when he was selected to be a part of the HPOG program.
  • HPOG Success Story: Sagal at Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County

    Published: June 21, 2019
    A Seattle mother shapes a new life through her passion for healthcare. February 2013 was a month of change for Sagal, a single mother of two who found herself starting over in Seattle, WA. She arrived in the city with her young children after separating from her husband. Wasting no time, Sagal went to the local TANF office on her second day to meet with a caseworker. She walked out with information that would transform the quality of life for her family forever. At the TANF office, she learned of Health Careers for All (HCA) run by the Workforce Development Council (WDC) of Seattle-King County under the first round of the Health Professions Opportunity Grants (HPOG 1.0). In March 2013, Sagal was accepted to HCA. By April, she joined the nursing cohort at South Seattle College (South), working to complete the courses needed to join the licensed practical nurse (LPN) program. She was quick to adapt to the fast-paced environment, but had concerns about how to balance caring for her children, maintaining a steady income, and schoolwork. She moved off TANF benefits when she found a job as a bilingual medical translator, earing $500 monthly. That job allowed her to work from home and spend more time with her children.
  • HPOG Success Story: Sophia at Zepf Center

    Published: June 21, 2019
    Sophia’s story is familiar yet still isolating. Financial struggles forced her into a vicious cycle of living paycheck to paycheck with a bleak future. She described her situation as slipping into survival mode. “I wasn’t living. I was in survival mode. I was focused on working a low-paying job to just barely make rent each month and then doing it all over again the next month. It’s a very hard cycle to break, it’s like running in place as fast as you can but going nowhere. In the end, I was just tired and worn out, but I kept doing it every day because I had no choice.” After learning about the Zepf Center’s HPOG program, Northwest Ohio Pathway to Healthcare Careers (NOPHC), from OhioMeansJobs Lucas County Center, Sophia realized she did have choices. Selflessly, she initially called looking for employment information for a family member, but instead, her own life took a turn. By March 2016, she had completed an HPOG Interest Survey and was randomly assigned into the Treatment group, which she was not expecting. She celebrated with a “happy dance” once she was given a small glimpse of what her future could hold.
  • HPOG Success Story: Tony at Edmonds Community College

    Published: June 21, 2019
    A new start is never easy, but for Tony, it was worth it. Tony was living in Alaska, working as a Patient Care Technician at a regional hospital after serving four years in the US Navy as a Hospital Corpsman. At this time, his life at home became stressful. His teenage son developed a chemical dependency and became homeless. Soon after, his wife divorced him. Feeling powerless, he moved to Washington State to be closer to his father. Tony hoped his move would be a fresh start, but he dealt with blow after blow. His military training was not accredited for licensure as a healthcare professional in the State of Washington. He felt locked out of healthcare and took a job at a gypsum recycling plant that was 60 miles away. That winter he was injured on the job, and his father’s health quickly declined. On a snowy day, his truck went into a spin and crashed into a guardrail. With no transportation, he had to quit his job. After two months of unemployment, Tony walked into the local WorkSource office for help with his résumé. He had no intention of going back to school, but he walked out of the office excited about the Creating Access To Careers in Healthcare (CATCH) program.
  • HPOG Success Story: Uriah at Cook Inlet Tribal Council

    Published: June 21, 2019
    Sometimes the child becomes the parent. Uriah Keith’s mother was only 15 years old when he was born. His childhood in Anchorage Alaska lacked stability and structure due to his mother’s battle with alcohol addiction. Eventually, Uriah and his sister were removed from her custody, and he had to grow up very fast. Not wanting to follow in his mother’s footsteps, Uriah enrolled in the Alaska Military Youth Academy (AMYA), hoping to find a disciplined and well-structured environment. Shortly after graduating from the AMYA, he and his young girlfriend learned they were expecting a child of their own. He joined the Alaska Army National Guard to provide for his growing family. Soon after joining, he broke his ankle during a routine training exercise. His doctor prescribed OxyContin for the pain, starting him on a path to drug abuse. After his drug use came to light, he lost his position in the National Guard. He spent time as a commercial fisherman, which allowed him to maintain his drug habit and support his son. After an eye-opening moment, Uriah realized he had to choose between his addiction and his family. His son won. He soon found himself at The Salvation Army Alaska Adult Rehabilitation program. His Recovery Counselor, CB, was a former addict who gave Uriah hope. After a relapse, he turned to Cook Inlet Tribal Council’s Ernie Turner Center for recovery assistance, where he met the team at Cook Inlet Tribal Council (CITC) HPOG.
  • HPOG Promising Practice: South Carolina Department of Social Services, Employment Strategies – Education, Training, and Support

    Published: June 6, 2019
    Project HOPE, funded by the Health Professions Opportunity Grant (HPOG) program, provides education and training to low-income individuals in South Carolina to prepare them for well-paying careers in healthcare.
  • HPOG Promising Practice: Hostos Community College, Employment Strategies–Education, Training, and Support Services

    Published: May 30, 2019
    Hostos Community College proves that personalized case management and career services are the keys to successful employment in healthcare. For their Allied Health Career Pipeline Program, Hostos Community College utilizes a three-phase case management approach to ensure successful outcomes: Orientation to Training, Completion to Career Services, and Career Services to Employment. By focusing on student engagement and individual case management throughout the program, students are motivated, supported, and empowered to achieve their goals.
  • HPOG Promising Practice: Pima County Community College, Partnership and Employment Strategies

    Published: May 24, 2019
    Pima Community College’s HPOG HOPES program trains low-income residents of Pima County, Arizona in the field of healthcare. HOPES offers entry to education by providing tuition and personalized support services. As demand for skilled employees in healthcare rises, so does the number of HOPES participants.