JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -

Missouri’s community college leaders are looking at ways to help more students find careers in health care. The leaders met last week to discuss how to maximize the impact of lessons learned through MoHealthWINs. It’s a $20 million U.S. Department of Labor grant through which the state’s public two-year institutions are training Missourians for careers in healthcare. The leaders will meet regularly to compare notes and develop strategies to last beyond the life of the grant.

Missouri Community College Assocation Executive Director Zora Mulligan said, “This grant is specifically intended to help community colleges identify the approaches that are most successful in helping the target population get a credential that prepares them for work in high-wage jobs that have good long-term prospects. The target population includes people who are eligible for Trade Adjustment Assistance because they have lost jobs as a result of increased exports, unemployed and underemployed individuals, and those who come in with markedly low levels of academic preparation. We know that many of these students have difficulty obtaining credentials, so the grant was designed to pilot some of the most successful innovations in community college education.”

Those innovations include flexible schedules and curriculum, compressed scheduling that allows students to obtain credentials quickly, tutoring and supplemental instruction, offering credit for prior learning, bridging credit and noncredit course work, employer driven curriculum, online or hybrid courses or programs, and self-paced academic solutions.

The group includes Scott of Ozarks Technical Community College. The group will will work closely with the MoHealthWINs Evaluation Team, comprised of Cosgrove & Associates and Bragg & Associates.