Lab Matters Winter 2022 | Page 30


Forging Collaborative Relationships Between Academic Partners and Public Health Labs

By Dana Powell Baker , MBA , MS , MLS ( ASCP ) CM , manager , Academic Partnerships
Global health champion and visionary Dr . Paul Farmer stated “ with rare exceptions , all of your most important achievements on this planet will come from working with others — or , in a word , partnership .” Partnerships , or collaborative relationships , are essential to the equity plan for public health on a national and global scale . To promote and improve equity in public health , APHL recognizes the importance of addressing the needs of public health laboratory workforce development while providing access for emerging and future public health professionals to career pathways for public health laboratories .
As a part of the Career Pathways in Public Health Laboratory Science Project funded by the American Rescue Plan , a new APHL-CDC internship initiative has been established and fellowship offerings have been expanded to recruit and train the next generation for careers in public health . One of the crucial aspects of academic partnerships is to promote and support the recruitment and placement of APHL internship , fellowship and leadership program participants within the public health laboratory community . These efforts include forging collaborative relationships between laboratories and academic partners for fellowship and internship opportunities . Although academic partnerships are not entirely new to APHL or public health laboratories , a new position was created within the association to support the establishment and sustainment of partnerships with academic institutions .
Division of Scientific Education and Professional Development ( DSEPD ) addressed the need for increased diversity , equity and inclusion in public health . DSEPD noted the need to attract a more diverse and qualified public health workforce through better recruitment efforts . By enhancing recruitment efforts to be more inclusive and reflective of diverse backgrounds , there is an opportunity to expose public health careers to a broader community while striving towards a more inclusive public health workforce .
Doctorate in Public Health ( DrPH ) degree in public health and clinical laboratory science and practice for public health laboratory professionals interested in leadership roles . This advanced degree option has provided a pathway for leadership positions at public health laboratories . Other key partnerships and collaborations are under development to provide more training opportunities and preparation for individuals in the public health laboratory workforce .
The promotion of career pathways in public health laboratories is evolving within the landscape of academic partnerships . Strategies include a multi-prong approach to promote pathways in public health through internships and fellowships . Furthermore , the implementation of advanced education and certification opportunities will support the ongoing professional development of those within the laboratory workforce . Other experiential learning programs , such as the APHL Emerging Leader Program , are also great options for current public health laboratorians to develop their leadership skills . Academic partnerships will continue to be essential to the establishment and maintenance of collaboration among those in the public health laboratory community , including academia , and other related organizations . g
References :
1 . Farmer , P , Weigel , JL , & Clinton , B . To Repair the World : Paul Farmer Speaks to the Next Generation ( Volume 29 ) ( California Series in Public Anthropology ) ( First ). University of California Press , 2019 .
2 . US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Public Health Workforce Development Strategies ( 2021 Sept 27 ) ( cited September 2022 ). Available from https :// www . cdc . gov / csels / dsepd / workforcestrategies . html .
28 LAB MATTERS Winter 2022
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