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HPOG Promising Practice: Chicago State University–Education, Training, and Support Services

Published: October 10, 2019
Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG)
Technical Assistance

Chicago, Il

Collaboration Brings HOPE to Chicago-Area Healthcare Career Seekers

In collaboration with Metropolitan Family Services (MFS) and South Suburban College (SSC), Chicago State University administers the Partnership to STEP-UP in Health Careers HPOG program. The program is an evidence-based, multi-institution collaboration that uses a multitiered approach to career laddering. STEP-UP aims to provide career pathways for high demand health professions through training and support services that help participants reach the highest level of their career trajectory.

In March 2018, the STEP-UP Program began the Helping Other People Excel (H.O.P.E.) Academy with the intention of increasing student retention from the time of intake orientation attendance. This mandatory program allows students to explore career pathway options, explains available HPOG support benefits, and provides supplemental academic advising.

H.O.P.E. Academy begins with a series of assessments that help staff members gauge where participants stand academically, identify support services that may be necessary to help them succeed, and provide a basis for evaluation. Among these assessments are a behavior and personality profile, life skills and basic adult education tests, and surveys that identify strengths, weaknesses, and potential barriers to success.

After the assessment, H.O.P.E. Academy focuses on four points to build academic success and greater workforce development skills within program participants:

  • Promote personal and academic growth for participants by creating a safe, nurturing, cooperative, and challenging environment;
  • Monitor characteristics of workforce interventions, activities, training, and ongoing technical support to ensure quality program implementation;
  • Provide leadership modeling and adequate resources related to job readiness; and
  • Offer professional development, supervision, coaching, support, and constructive feedback

These four points allow facilitators to assess participants holistically, taking mental health, employment history, and previous education into account when providing support and training. H.O.P.E. covers real-world skills and topics like goal setting, assessment, interpersonal communications, interviewing techniques, social awareness, navigating college/postsecondary education, professionalism and digital literacy.

H.O.P.E. Academy would not be such a success without the cooperation and collaboration of its various partners. Metropolitan Family Services organizes the H.O.P.E. Academy, facilitates instruction and administers the assessments. Academic advisors from both Chicago State University and South Suburban College conduct health care training sessions and provide academic progress guidance.

“The HOPE Academy gives participants the opportunity to explore various health professions and discusses how the HPOG program can assist them with achieving their goals.”

– Catherine Smith,

Academic Advisor, Chicago State University

This Promising Practice was self-identified by the grantee and information contained in this document was provided by the grantee.

Last Reviewed: October 10, 2019