Rarely has there been a time when nurses and medical support staff haven’t been needed. But with an aging baby boomer population and a growing population in general, Kern County is feeling the pinch.
Thankfully, the excellent nursing programs offered through CSUB and BC encourage many students to venture into the medical field so that future generations of Bakersfieldians are cared for. Of course, it’s not always a matter of quantity, but quality.
“The Alliance of Medical Professionals [AMP] was our plan to develop the local workforce for the medical field and ‘grow our own’ future professionals,” explained Patricia Marquez, program manager and foundation liaison for the Kern Economic Development Corporation’s Foundation (Kern Economic Development Foundation ). While the Kern EDC has spent the last two decades promoting Kern County’s economic potential to big-name companies, it’s also tried to make sure that our county puts its best foot forward in all aspects of business. And the medical field just happens to be one of those areas.
“We heard time and time again that many potential hires and new employees lacked the soft skills needed to be the best employee they could,” Marquez continued. “From the lack of punctuality to the casual dress to the work-inappropriate social media posts, the new hires were struggling to put their best professional foot forward. We especially heard about these challenges from the healthcare field. In addition, the healthcare industry often spoke about the fact that it was difficult to recruit medical professionals from out of town and out of state.”
Danay Jones discusses college and finances with Sydney Romero.
And since the Kern EDC and its Foundation was already in the market of mentoring, the decision was made last year to include a program for mentoring students interested in the medical field. Naturally, the response has been great and the program has grown in its second year.
The goal is to not only encourage students already interested in medicine, but to ensure that they come out with a professional attitude and work ethic and, just as importantly, want to stay in Kern County.