The proposed Columbia Regional Learning Center will serve its public health practice partners in an area that is home to one in every fourteen Americans. It is predicated on the notion that today's public health practitioners are under tremendous strain and face considerable budgetary pressures, with escalating demands and little time available for training. There is a pressing need for high-quality, validated instruction that is understandable, well- retained, contributes to an integrated and coordinated public health emergency response system, and relates clearly to the roles that the public health workforce may be expected to play in an emergency or disaster. The Columbia Regional Learning Center will ensure access to such instruction through progressive technologies for distance learning, regional workshops, and Advance Teams. The pedagogical expertise of educational scholars with years of experience designing and validating professional curricula will ensure the quality of the training. Many of the key personnel are internationally-recognized public health practice experts from the teaching faculty at the Mailman School and Columbia University Teachers College. The Center has received letters of support from nearly 30 state and local public health agencies. The collaboration of these Partners, the Center's key personnel and advisory panels consisting of leading scientists and the country's most seasoned and knowledgeable public health practice experts will ensure that the Center's training offerings reflect the best knowledge and best practices concerning core competency based training in the public health profession. In the first year, the Center will adapt and develop up to 20 competency based public health preparedness and response courses across a number of platforms--blended distance/hands-on-learning, webinars, podcasts, and video archives'and competency areas. It will offer face-to-face training opportunities by public health and subject matter experts at venues across the region. In order to address the Partner Requested training component of this solicitation, the Center will field 'Advance Teams'-- small teams consisting of an MPH-level Project Coordinator, a health educator and an instructional designer--that will work extensively with selected public health practice Partners for three to four months to develop targeted training and evaluation programs. In this process, the Project Coordinator will 'embed'herself or himself in the Partner's operations for approximately two days per week. The Center will offer Just-in-Time support within 24-72 hours via webcasts and video streaming subject matter expert modules, customized core competency trainings, and online trainings for emergent events. It will offer a number of preparedness and response tools, including an Interactive Job Action Sheet Database, built on ESF-8 tasks;a 'What You Need to Know'primer series of concise information modules;and a volunteer workforce of graduate public health students for deployment during mobilizations, trainings, or evaluations. In all of its training offerings and activities, the Center will take maximum advantage of emerging technologies to engage the public health workforce and associated responders, disseminate and deliver training material, and link with Partners across the region. The Columbia Regional Learning will derive input regarding core competency based training and our Partners'requirements from the Partners themselves, the Center's Science and Practice Advisory panels, from CDC-led partnership activities, other PERLCs and the PERRCs. The Center's three operational units--Evaluation &Development, Production &Infrastructure, and Marketing, Communications, &Partnership'will coordinate the process of turning the varied sources of input into products.

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Columbia University (N.Y.)
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Public Health
New York
United States
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