200903 M.O.R.(Mentoring Organization Registry) for the Public Health Workforce: Connecticut Public Health Association's strategy for developing youth as future public health leaders

Wednesday, November 11, 2009: 1:30 PM

Cyndi Billian Stern, MA, MPH , Billian Stern Consulting, LLC, Farmington, CT
Kristin Sullivan, MA , Workforce and Professional Development Section, Connecticut Department of Public Health, Hartford, CT
When compared to other states, Connecticut ranks in the bottom one-third in its ratio of public health workers to people served. The urgency of the public health worker shortage has spurred CT Public Health Association to turn to a recruitment strategy used by Fortune 500 companies: workplace mentoring. Workplace mentoring variations have been proven to attract young, talented and diverse workers with strong math, science and technology skills.

In 2007, CPHA started the Mentoring Organization Registry (MOR). Today the Registry has 14 organizational members that agree to reach middle and high school students and educators with public health concepts, skills and careers. The philosophy of the group is that even if students do not join the public health workforce, they will be more likely to contribute to a healthy community by practicing healthy behaviors, caring for the environment and becoming effective public health advocates and philanthropists.

MOR has effectively attracted CPHA members from a broad range of institutions, including higher education, local and state health departments, foundations and non-profits, to collaborate on grants and free programs that develop youth as future public health leaders. Most importantly, the MOR has fostered new relationships between public health organizations and middle and high schools: to date MOR members have reached over 260 students and educators in over 30 communities.

This presentation will describe the rationale for creating mentoring in the workplace, how to start a Mentoring Organization Registry in your APHA affiliate, and materials and activities that boost the school-workplace partnerships.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance and value of building a career mentoring system in the workplace from high school interns to top management. Describe how to use a continuum of mentoring as a tool to attract and retain a diverse workforce comprised of high quality professionals. Describe how to establish a Mentoring Organization Registry through your APHA affiliate.

Keywords: Leadership, Workforce

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: MPH from University of CT; Consultant on youth policy and public health workforce development since 1995; Research and presentations on Building CT's Public Health Pipeline, author of CT Business and Industry's guides for workplace mentors and interns; Co-Chair & Founder of Mentoring Organization Registry for CT Public Health Association
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.