Partnership creates pathway to life-changing career opportunities
Innovative pilot program provides job opportunities at Meritus Health
HAGERSTOWN, Md. – For people trying to change their quality of life, sometimes a pathway needs to be found. Meritus Health, Horizon Goodwill Industries, and Maryland Physicians Care have created that pathway to connect people with opportunities.
A team consisting of members representing Meritus Health, Horizon Goodwill Industries, and Maryland Physicians Care have crafted an innovative pilot program, Pathway to Healthcare, to path low/moderate income candidates directly into living wage positions in one of five identified divisions at Meritus. “We are honored to play a connecting role in this program to help support county residents and businesses,” said David Shuster, Ed.D., president and CEO of Horizon Goodwill Industries. “Through this program, we are able to directly improve the lives of the participants and strengthen the health system that serves the community. We see this as a very valuable initiative and are thrilled to be the lead sponsor,” said Jason Rottman, CEO of Maryland Physicians Care.
The concept is simple: Employment is offered in one of the numerous areas at Meritus Health. Maryland Physicians Care provides the administrative staff for program design and deployment. Training and development are provided by Horizon Goodwill Industries through the ‘Get Onboard!’ soft skills academy. Additionally, Maryland Physicians Care will cover program costs, including the candidates’ pre-employment training expenses, uniforms, and a potential bonus upon completion of the probationary period. “In fulfillment of our mission, Maryland Physicians Care is looking at factors beyond clinical care that affect our member’s health outcomes, and improving income stability is foundational to ensuring individuals have the resources and means to live healthy lives,” said Lorena de Leon, D.P.A., Sr. Director of Population Health, Maryland Physicians Care.
Once employment is underway, a probationary period begins. After six months of employment, Meritus Health reviews the employee’s performance and will offer support in furthering education and training in healthcare-specific roles. “Our health system and many industries need good, committed, and loyal workers. We are looking to the strengths that already exist within our own community and connecting them with the skills and training to develop them,” said Maulik Joshi, Dr.P.H., president and CEO of Meritus Health.
“In the current labor market, it is vital that we have community partners who are willing to take bold new approaches to recruit and retain employees. Creating training pathways that lead to living-wage employment opportunities for “hidden workers” is a win-win,” said Brooke Grossman, Horizon Goodwill Industries, chief mission officer.
The pilot has already taken off.
Hires have already been made following a job fair in September at Horizon Goodwill’s Human Services Building on North Prospect Street in downtown Hagerstown.
“This is just the beginning. Joshi said. “It’s not just a pathway to a job, this partnership provides an opportunity for a better life. And as the employer, it’s a great way to have a workforce representing our local community.”
Filed Under: News
About Horizon Goodwill: Horizon Goodwill Industries (HGI) is a future-focused nonprofit workforce development organization headquartered in Hagerstown, MD with responsibility for serving communities in 17 counties across MD, PA, WV, and VA. Operating numerous social enterprises and human services programs, HGI helps thousands of individuals each year pursue economic mobility through its mission of removing barriers and creating opportunities for meaningful and sustainable employment. Through this work, Goodwill is committed to advancing equitable opportunities for employment and environmental, social, and economic sustainability. Learn more at www.horizongoodwill.org. For media inquiries, contact Craig Foster, Marketing and Public Relations Manager at 301-733-7330 x1630 or firstname.lastname@example.org