Responding to a regional crisis supply of registered nurses, a group of innovative healthcare and education leaders convened in March to draft plans for a pilot nursing pipeline program.

Convened by Dr. Anitra Williams, Director of Nursing Operations at St. Joseph’s Medical Center, the group has drafted a concrete plan to help high school students enrolled at Stockton Unified School District’s Health Careers Academy make the transition to nursing.

Calling themselves the “Make It Happen” Team, the group emerged as a result of its members’ involvement in the HealthForce Partners Northern San Joaquin Valley (formerly known as the San Joaquin Area Health Sector Partnership), a new regional structure for collaboration between healthcare employers, education, and workforce development.

The draft plan would establish a new collaboration between Health Careers Academy, San Joaquin Delta College, California State University Stanislaus, and area healthcare employers to provide RN prerequisites training to students in grades 11 and 12. Those students would then enroll in a designated “fast-track” RN program offered by Delta College.

The model is flexible enough to apply to other populations as well, most notably adults not yet working in healthcare and those already working in entry-level healthcare positions. The partnership continues to develop strategies to help those populations gain the skills to meet healthcare employers’ most pressing workforce needs.

The team will present its draft strategy to the partnership’s Executives Council on April 23.

For more information, please contact Christina Bastida at (209) 623-9907 or cbastida@healthforcepartners.

Pictured, from left: Valerie Fisher, Deputy Sector Navigator, California Community Colleges, Health Workforce Initiative; Julie Kay, Dean of Health Sciences, San Joaquin Delta College; Lisa Lucchesi, Director of Health Sciences, San Joaquin Delta College; Dr. Anitra Williams, Director of Nursing Operations, St. Joseph’s Medical Center.

Not shown: Dr. Debra Tavernier, Director, School of Nursing, California State University Stanislaus.