Northwest Ohio Pathway to Healthcare Careers
There’s an old saying that luck is what happens when opportunity meets preparation.
Shantia, a young woman in Toledo, Ohio, used a Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) program to help make her own luck and develop her own opportunity for a better life.
Shantia was a young woman facing long odds. A mother of six, she was saddled with a mountain of student loan debt and a history of anxiety and panic attacks as well as sleep issues. Despite these financial and personal stresses, Shantia began training to be a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and was working hard to forge a future for herself in the healthcare industry.
Early in 2016, Shantia became aware of Northwest Ohio Pathway to Healthcare Careers (NOPHC) Visit disclaimer page funded by the Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) program. The healthcare training program is operated by the Zepf Center, a Toledo, Ohio area non-profit that provides behavioral health and vocational services to youth and adults with severe and persistent mental illness. While not debilitated by her own mental health issues, Shantia recognized that NOPHC was tailored for her needs so she filled out an application and attended an informational forum. It was there that she found out that entry to the program was through a lottery system. Shantia’s hopes were immediately clouded with concern; she had never considered herself the lucky sort and wasn’t sure the luck of the draw would favor her. But she didn’t let those doubts slow her down and followed through with the application process.
When the time came for random assignment of applicants, Shantia made it! She was going to have her chance to be a nurse. Now it was up to her to take advantage of her opportunity.
While Shantia focused on her academics, NOPHC was able to provide not only the financial help she needed, but also a support team that was willing to go above and beyond in helping Shantia achieve the goals she had set for herself. Over the course of a year, Shantia struggled with her finances as she studied because she was not able to work as many hours as needed. But she persevered, graduated from school, and quickly found work as an LPN. She has now taken the next step, and is back in school to become a Registered Nurse.
Shantia may have needed the luck of the draw to make it through the HPOG lottery system, but it now looks like her future is a sure bet.
- PDF HPOG Shantia at Zepf Center PDF (218.19 KB)