Thrive by IU Health

November 04, 2020

“Move Up” grant supports team member career growth

“Move Up” grant supports team member career growth

An IU Health Foundation grant is delivering a double benefit: By helping to equip IU Health team members with new technical skills, it allows the employees to “Move Up” in their careers and helps IU Health fill in-demand positions.

A $450,000 grant allows IU Health to provide Move Up Scholarships in the form of paid, on-site training for entry-level employees interested in pharmacy technician and surgical technology jobs. IU Health team members who qualify for the program, which began its first round of training on July 6, receive their regular pay and benefits while participating in the program, and all costs for courses, supplies and certification are covered.

In other words, said IU Health Human Resources Program Manager Jennifer Novello, MSHRM, participants get paid while they train, and the training costs them nothing.

IU Health sees the program as a sound investment in the future. “There’s a really big demand for these individuals,” Novello said. “Also, in our employee engagement surveys, we hear people say, ‘I want upward mobility, and I want to be recognized for the good work I’m doing.’”

The program removes two common barriers for IU Health team members who want to move up in their careers: Working full-time in entry-level jobs, they often can’t find time to take classes, and the cost of training can be beyond their budgets. Funding for the scholarships comes from three sources: IU Health Academic Adult Health Center (AAHC) education and learning funds, the Area of Greatest Need Fund supported by IU Health donors, and board-designated matching dollars from IU Health Foundation.

The program is being piloted at the AAHC, but the plan is to expand it to other IU Health regions. Employees in good standing who have been with IU Health for at least six months were invited to apply for the scholarships, and applicants came from a range of positions, including housekeeper, registration specialist, tech unit support and patient transporter. Scholarship recipients are required to sign a two-year work agreement.

Organizers expected the COVID-19 outbreak to dampen interest in enrolling in the program this year, but nearly 100 team members applied. Seven employees received scholarships for pharmacy technician training, and 10 will receive scholarships for the surgical technology training that begins in August. Additional cohorts will launch quarterly.

“We’re excited to open doors for our employees beyond their current roles,” Novello said. “We’re always interested in helping them grow.”

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