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Center for Healthy Communities

Our Mission

The Center for Healthy Communities endeavors to positively impact our community’s health status through workforce development, grant activities, continuing education, and service learning.

Our Goals

  • Create community partnerships
  • Seek and obtain extramural funding
  • Facilitate grant process for interested faculty, staff, and community partners
  • Oversee continuing education and community-based learning and development
  • Maintain an inventory of service learning activities and opportunities

Organizational Structure

How The Center Benefits Our Community

  • Workforce Development
    • Professional continuing education
    • Workforce development grants
  • Partner Engagement
    • Community service grants
    • Service learning
    • Community-based learning
  • CEU program initiated 2001
  • 2017 increase in continuing education offerings
    • Grant funded deliverables
    • Increased engagement by professional social work community
  • Program Status, 2018-2019 academic year
    • 14 events
    • 518 attendees
  • Future Planning
    • Online CEU’s
    • Certificate programs
    • Global/Study Abroad CEU’s
    • Development of interprofessional programming

Workforce Development Grants

    • Maryland Behavioral Health Integration in Pediatric Primary Care
    • Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation
  • Eastern Shore Faculty Academy and Mentorship Initiative
    • Clinical faculty preparation
  • Toolkits for Nursing Leadership Development 


  • Collaboration between University of Maryland School of Medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and Salisbury University
  • Piloted Fall 2012, Statewide 2013

Background And Significance

  • Gap between need for and availability of child and adolescent mental health services
  • Lack of access to mental health services is particularly evident in rural or remote areas
  • Primary care as point of universal access

Program Highlights

  • As of 10/18/19, MSW Interns have had 5,010 patient contacts

Lower Shore Early Childhood Mental Consultation Program

  • Funded by MSDE
  • Early childhood mental health consultation services to licensed center-based and family childcare providers and early childhood education settings
  • Utilization of MSW Interns to support needs in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester Counties
  • Importance
    • Pre-K expulsion rates
    • Importance of relationships between children and early childhood educators

Eastern Shore Faculty Academy & Mentorship Initiative

  • $375 K initial 3 year award; $2 M, 5-year continuation grant
  • Goals:
    • Prepare expert nurses as clinical teachers
    • Diversity the nurse educator workforce
    • Encourage pursuit of advanced education
  • Locations: Eastern Shore, Central Maryland, Western Maryland
  • Outcomes:
    • 150 graduates; 37% from under-represented groups
    • 70% teaching for a partner;
    • 27% have enrolled in/completed advanced degree

Toolkits For Nursing Leadership Development

  • $2.1 M, 4-year grant
  • Goal:
    • Create web-based toolkits to teach leadership skills
  • Partners: PRMC, AGH, University of Maryland Shore Regional Health
  • Outcomes
    • Toolkit 1 - Professional Communication and Professional Boundaries
    • Toolkit 2 - Interprofessional Collaboration in End of Life Care
    • Toolkit 3 - Conflict Management in Substance Abuse
    • Toolkit 4 - Conflict Management in Discharge Planning
    • Toolkit 5 - Advocacy in Caring for a Client with PTSD
    • Toolkit 6 - Advocacy in Post-Op Care

Lead Nursing Forward.Org

  • $1.9 M, 5-year grant
  • Goal: develop a one-stop web resource
    • Increase awareness of the ongoing shortage of nursing faculty and RNs;
    • Provide strategies and tips on how to become a nurse educator;
    • Serve as a resource for accurate information about advancing one's education in nursing;
    • Post open positions for nurse educators in colleges/universities and health care organizations.
  • Partners: SUSON, UMSON, ESRGC, Pinnacle Communications, Hartlove-Goodyear

Partner/Community Engagement

  • Community Service Grants
    • HopeCorps
      • Strengthen the capacity of community organizations working to tackle the heroin and opioid epidemic in Maryland
      • Members support the promotion, growth, and development of programs at their placement sites
    • HRSA
      • RCORP-Planning grant
      • Development of Stepping Stones Consortium
      • Needs assessment, strategic plan, workforce development plan, sustainability plan
    • KISS
      • Funding by Maryland Department of Health
      • Student run organization that utilizes peer health educators to spread awareness about safe sex and testing for STI’s

Partner/Community Engagement

  • Community-based and Service Learning
    • Create Speaker’s Bureau to support community education efforts
    • Identify current volunteer, service learning, and internship activities
    • Explore new community-based learning opportunities
  • Consultation and Program Evaluation