Emerging Champion Alameda Health System, based in Oakland, Calif., is well on its way to building a frontline workforce that mirrors the diversity of its patient population and residents of the surrounding communities. “Caring, Healing, Teaching, Serving All’ is the framework for programs that build foundational skills and promote career development, such as the organization’s ‘Bridge to Healthcare.’ This 18-week program partners with a local community college to prepare environmental services technicians and food services workers for future jobs advancement. Just recently, Alameda Health added a new apprenticeship program that not only offers credentialing, but workers also receive on-the-job training and guaranteed positions.
Forward-facing, community-focused programs like HealthPATH also represent the organization’s commitment to investing in local youth and young adults through workplace-based learning experiences and internships. Since 2015, these opportunities, which are directed toward low-income young adults of color, have grown by 68%. The organization’s Health Excellence & Leadership, or HEAL, initiative builds upon the HealthPATH framework by ensuring that high school and middle school students are exposed to potential health careers through shadowing, mentoring, and simulations that allow them to experience life as a frontline worker and better understand what the educational requirements they need to fill these roles.
Alameda Healthcare’s ongoing investment in diversity and the community reflects organizational priorities and is only one of the multiple best practices that the organization has embraced.