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HPOG Promising Practice: Edmonds Community College, Partnership–Recruitment

Published: August 20, 2019
Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG)
Technical Assistance

Lynnwood, WA

New partners support program goals to strengthen and expand training options for participants.

Individuals in Washington State make their healthcare education and employment dreams come true through an expanded online and traditional learning community.

Edmonds Community College in Washington State manages Innovations in Creating Access to Careers in Health (I-CATCH). Funded by Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG), the program makes healthcare training accessible to low-income and underrepresented individuals such as recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). I-CATCH delivers healthcare training through Edmonds Community College, Everett Community College, and Skagit Valley College.

Improving economic conditions and record low unemployment led to a dip in program enrollment in 2017, year two of their HPOG grant. The solution: expand their network of partners to reach the previously unserved Whatcom County to the North of their service area.

In 2018, Whatcom Community College became the fourth college to join the I-CATCH training network. The partnership comes with strong support from the college’s president and staff as well as community partners like Workforce Snohomish. Advanced preparations in May 2018 with the college, Workforce Snohomish, and local Department of Social and Human Services TANF offices made it possible deploy staff and resources to welcome qualified residents of Whatcom County into the I-CATCH program.

With infrastructure in place, Whatcom Community College became a partner on September 30, 2018. I-CATCH worked with the Whatcom Community College financial aid and finance office to cover participant tuition for the quickly approaching fall semester after finalizing the partnership. This allowed for better recruitment of students and the deployment of trained community, academic, and employment navigators provided by Workforce Snohomish.

Training at Whatcom Community College started on October 1, 2018, with fifteen students in nursing assisting, medical assisting, and chemical dependency prevention. The program provides for its participants well beyond tuition and textbooks. Students are provided with resources aimed at driving success such as computer literacy training, pre-paid bus cards, laptops, and internet access.

Expanding the network of education and workforce partners makes it possible for more participants in Washington State to succeed in occupational training, putting them on a path to knowledge, certification, and employment in meaningful health careers.

Partnership expansion supports one of the hallmarks of I-CATCH–to integrate training and employment preparation so participants can achieve a long and successful career.

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

Last Reviewed: August 20, 2019