Mining data and optimizing technology are some of the ways the health care industry is working to improve patient experiences and outcomes.
But in order to deliver on the data and technologies that we have available to us, we need skilled workers to perform the work. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 22 percent growth in the number of health technologists by 2026 in North Carolina alone.
This is just one example of why North Carolina needs to have plans in place to train the workforce of tomorrow. It is why we are hosting the Experience More Summit on Dec. 7 in Research Triangle Park. As the business voice and a trusted adviser that creates and identifies best practices in education, the North Carolina Business Committee for Education works to close workforce skill gaps and help meet North Carolina’s business workforce demands.
In partnership with the Governor’s office, the Community College System, the Department of Public Instruction, NCWorks and the Department of Commerce, the summit will showcase quality work-based learning programs and partnerships already hard at work to develop skilled workers and engage with those eager to be trained.
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For example, with a grant from the United Health Foundation, the Carolina Health Informatics Program at UNC-Chapel Hill held its first health informatics summer “boot camp” in Chapel Hill this past summer. During a seven-week experience, underrepresented minority undergraduate students from several nearby colleges and universities learned how to apply data analytics techniques to address some of our most troubling health concerns such as the flu, HIV and the opioid crisis. It was a clear success, with nearly half of the students expressing a strong interest in pursuing further studies in health informatics at the completion of the program.
The CHIP boot camp example is a win-win-win situation.
For employers, developing and supporting work-based learning opportunities allows them to increase and directly shape their talent pipeline.
For educators, introducing students to these learning opportunities helps to create deeper connections between what students are learning in school and how those lessons can be used in the real world.
And for students, gaining skills and experience through work-based learning programs helps them to become more attractive to employers and be better prepared for the jobs of tomorrow. This is the power of work-based learning.
Want to create something similar for your company or within your industry? Join us on Dec 7 to see work-based learning in action.
The summit will showcase students that participate in work-based learning including the North Carolina teams that won the Lenovo App Challenge. You can learn how to set up an apprenticeship program from Siemens, one of the leaders in apprenticeship. There will be sessions on work-based learning in rural communities and in small business. The summit will also feature the launch the Navigator, a new platform developed in partnership with Fidelity Investments that will connect employers to educators for work-based learning.
At the North Carolina Business Committee for Education, we are getting ready for the future by helping to train bright workers today. We are connecting education with businesses to ensure a vibrant economy in North Carolina. We hope you will join us.
Albert Eckel is the chair of the Board of the N.C. Business Committee for Education. Caroline Sullivan is the executive director for the N.C. Business Committee for Education.