EDISON — A new federal grant is funding free training at Middlesex County College in the allied health professions. Programs include Medical Office Specialist, Pharmacy Technician, Medical Assistant, EKG Technician, and Phlebotomist. Some programs run for as little as four weeks; others go for 10 months.
“We have a little bit of everything depending on how much time you have,” said Martin Schamberger, the coordinator. “And the grant covers all fees and most expenses: books, child care if you need it, uniforms and supplies, and even public transportation to get to the campus. President Obama has recognized that health care is a growing industry and crucial to the economic recovery. Plus, with an aging population, we’ll need more qualified professionals to fill those roles.”
The Pharmacy Technician program begins Aug. 1. Other classes start in the fall. The program is aimed at individuals who are unemployed or underemployed; students must have a high school diploma or GED.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for those who are now unemployed or underemployed to start fresh and begin a new career,” Schamberger said.
Each Friday, the classes will focus on life-skills to enhance the students’ personal and professional development. These topics include nutrition, time management, stress management and parenting skills, as well as preparing for the job search.
The five-year grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families to the Northern New Jersey Health Professions Consortium, which consists of nine community colleges in the state. Middlesex will receive $2.4 million over the five years.
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