The Orleans/Niagara BOCES' Allied Health Program has won praise and credit from Niagara University. The career and technical education program assists students with an interest in the health sciences by exposing them to real life experience in the health care industry and prepares them for secondary education.
Orleans/Niagara BOCES Career and Technical Education Director Joseph Steinmetz was thrilled when Niagara University informed him that students taking the program qualify to receive credit for biology 101 at the college. "Looking over our curriculum, they deemed it worthy of college credit from them, which is very exciting. Our students can also credit from Bryant and Stratton, Genesee Community College and Niagara County Community College, so this is great that they now have this option as well. It is a wonderful opportunity for them," Steinmetz said.
The three credits from NU will run students about $180, which is a substantial reduction in the cost and students can apply for the credits starting this fall semester. BOCES Health Program Supervisor Janet Cook says the curriculum was not the only thing that swayed the college to grant the career and tech students the credits. "We had a real advocate in Honor Martin, who is the director of education and organizational development at Mount St. Mary's. She sees that facilities such as hers are always in need of exceptional candidates for available health care positions.
"Being alumna of NU, she pushed for them to accept the students in our program for this credit. She has seen our students in action at her site, where some go for the clinical part of their program, and knows how well they are educated and prepared for attending college for careers in the health field," Cook said.
Martin says she loves the idea of a health academy without walls and is looking forward to the part that Mount St. Mary's will play in the second phase of the program. "The Allied Health students will be assigned to hospital departments, where directors and managers will provide instructional support for the occupational portion of the program, which will also be recognized by Niagara University for college credit. The first phase of the program features the new alignment of the Allied Health students with the Niagara University biology 101 curriculum, which also affords college credit for course completion," Martin said.
The Allied Health Program is taught at four different hospital sites: DeGraff Memorial in North Tonawanda, Medina Memorial Hospital, Eastern Niagara Hospital and Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center. For more information, visit the Orleans/Niagara BOCES website at www.onboces.org.