PLATTSBURGH — Clinton Community College is offering a new degree program that doesn't require students to step foot in a classroom or pay for textbooks. 

The school has partnered with Herkimer County Community College to offer an Associate of Applied Science degree in health-services management. 

"Herkimer College was a perfect partner for this because five of the core health-services courses will actually be offered online through Herkimer College, and then our students can take the program and the five courses at Herkimer and everything else here, and the same with the Herkimer Community College students," explained CCC Dean of Enrollment Management Anna Miarka-Grzelak. 

"So we've got a brand new program without having to hire new faculty."

Sections of some courses will be available both online and on campus. 

"So people do have that option," Miarka-Grzelak said. 

MATERIALS COVERED

Additionally, the program utilizes an Open Educational Resource Degree Initiative grant from the nonprofit group Achieving the Dream. 

This means students will not have to purchase textbooks for any of the program's courses. Instead, all course materials will be available online.

"They will pay a small $10 fee to have access to those resources, and that's all," Miarka-Grzelak said. 

This will result in notable savings for students, she added, "because textbooks are a significant cost of going to college." 

GROWTH FIELD

The degree program will provide participants with skills and knowledge related to business management, community medicine and public health, medical problems and programs, issues in long-term care, health-facilities management and medical terminology, according to a CCC news release.

“Clinton has done some market research over the last couple of years, and we looked at the job market in the North Country, and there are basically two areas that are growing," Miarka-Grzelak told the Press-Republican. 

One of those, she said, is manufacturing and the other, health services.

With the population getting older, she continued, services such as hospice, caregiving and rehabilitation will be increasingly in demand. 

"And all those services have to have support services, which that's where the Health Services Management (program) comes in because it allows people to basically develop skills and learn (about) running a health-care business office,” Miarka-Grzelak said.

JOB OPTIONS

Graduates will be prepared to compete for employment in physicians offices, hospitals, managed-care systems, nursing homes, adult-care, assisted- and independent-living facilities and home-care and volunteer agencies, both in government and private industry.

Positions may include service coordinators, personnel assistants, office managers, field staff supervisors, administrative assistants and other business office personnel.

"People getting the degree will be able to come out and basically have the skills to go directly into the workforce,”  Miarka-Grzelak said. 

Enrollment in the program is underway, with courses set to begin in the upcoming fall semester. 

Email Ashleigh Livingston:

alivingston@pressrepublican.com

Twitter: @AshJLivingston 

LEARN MORE

For additional information about the Health Services Management program, contact the Clinton Community College Admissions Office at 562-4170. 

Current CCC students can learn more by calling the college's Counseling/Advisement Office at 562-4199. 

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Ashleigh Livingston reports education and health news. She is a graduate of SUNY Plattsburgh, where she also serves as an adjunct lecturer.

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