Laconia, NH – The strong relationship between LRGHealthcare and Lakes Region Community College was on display Friday, October 20 at the first celebration of the new ApprenticeshipUSA-NH Program. The celebration took the form of a pinning ceremony to honor the accomplishments of the first group of apprentices to complete the classroom portion of the program and proceed to on-the-job training. The seven apprentices received their Medical Assistant pins in front of friends and family. Prior to participating in the Apprenticeship Program, each of the apprentices worked at LRGHealthcare as Licensed Nursing Assistants (LNA).
“The Apprenticeship Program is serving as a great vehicle for us to retain our employees and give them an opportunity to add skills and knowledge to their healthcare careers that, without the resources from the Apprenticeship Program, might not have been available,” said Cass Walker, chief human resources officer and vice president of administrative support services at LRGHealthcare. “I’m hoping that we are showing our community that there are many opportunities in healthcare for people, whether they are fresh out of high school or returning to the workforce, as well as ways to advance their careers within organizations such as ours.”
The ApprenticeshipUSA-NH Program provided the seven apprentices with an opportunity to go back to school and further their education and career goals without risking their employment or taking on significant financial debt. The Apprenticeship Program partnership between LRGHealthcare and Lakes Region Community College offered apprentices twelve weeks of classroom instruction followed by on-the-job training. Upon completion of the 2,000 hours of workplace experience, all seven apprentices will become Medical Assistants.
“The Apprenticeship Program gave me a real push and truly helped build my confidence,” said Jamie Shedd, a current apprentice in the Medical Assistant Program at LRGHealthcare. “I feel like I can do anything now as long as I put my mind to it.”
While participating in the program, apprentices continued to receive wages and benefits from LRGHealthcare, and have had the cost of tuition paid for in part by LRGHealthcare and by funds from the Community College System of New Hampshire (CCSNH) Apprenticeship USA grant. The apprentices honored at the pinning ceremony commented that the program has been challenging, but rewarding, and they are excited to sit for their Certified Medical Assistant exams in a few weeks.
“The Program opened my eyes to the opportunities that exist and by doing so it is driving me to learn and know as much as I possibly can,” said Dulce Boehme, a current apprentice in the Medical Assistant Program at LRGHealthcare. “I am grateful to be part of the program and I am excited for what’s to come.”
To learn more about the ApprenticeshipUSA-NH Program, visit earnlearnnh.org, or contact Emily Zeien at email@example.com.
LRGHealthcare is a not-for-profit healthcare charitable trust representing Lakes Region General Hospital, Franklin Regional Hospital, and affiliated medical providers. LRGHealthcare’s mission is to provide quality, compassionate care to strengthen the well-being of our community.
The ApprenticeshipUSA-NH Program is a unique effort that prepares workers as Registered Apprentices to better compete in the modern workforce. Focusing on the Advanced Manufacturing, Healthcare, and Information Technology sectors, the ApprenticeshipUSA-NH Program provides workers with invaluable opportunities to pursue highly-skilled, high-paying jobs, and opportunities for employers seeking to build a qualified workforce in NH. Housed at the Community College System of New Hampshire, the program is funded through a $1.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The Community College System of NH consists of seven colleges, offering associate degree and certificate programs, professional training, transfer pathways to four-year degrees, and dual credit partnerships with NH high schools. The System’s colleges are Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth and Rochester; Lakes Region Community College in Laconia; Manchester Community College; Nashua Community College; NHTI – Concord’s Community College; River Valley Community College in Claremont, Lebanon and Keene; and White Mountains Community College in Berlin, Littleton and North Conway. The seven community colleges in the system are committed to working with businesses throughout the state to train and retain employees to develop a robust workforce across all sectors and embraces the “65 by 25 Initiative,” which calls for 65% of NH citizens to have some form of postsecondary education by 2025 to meet future workforce demands.