The Network for Professional Education Debuts New Website with Learning Catalog and Trainers Hub
BUSSW’s nationally-known Center for Aging and Disability Education and Research (CADER) and Professional Education Programs (PEP) now operate under a new model called The Network for Professional Education featuring a multi-faceted website that functions as a nexus to connect alumni, faculty, and external agencies.
The Network’s mission is to be a solution partner that supports health and social services professionals – helping them grow and succeed by improving their competencies. The new entity identifies learning paths and offers career and advancement opportunities for both trainers and learners so they can better meet the diverse, ever-changing needs of the individuals and communities they serve.
The site’s clean, accessible design includes an intuitive portal for the Learning Catalog, a lifelong learning database that will serve as a “one-stop resource” for professional education and workforce development efforts offered through BUSSW alumni and faculty.
CADER, the signature program in The Network and the primary training and research arm, will continue to provide high quality training, tools, and support – now offered on one platform with multiple modalities. Through the new interactive site, agencies can find workforce development opportunities, including and beyond expertise in aging, to help them respond to new demands and challenges in the fields of health and social work.
As Andrew Stewart, head of program development for Santa Cruz County Human Services, puts it, “There are so many different options out there for staff training — it’s hard to know which ones are worth the money. With CADER, the quality of the education provided is outstanding. Training is evidence-based, with an academic spine that is also informed by practitioners. Because it’s offered online in modules, it’s easy for staff to complete the training on their own schedule when it’s most convenient for them.”
A new component of The Network, The Trainers Hub, will evolve into a database of trainers and consultants, all of whom are BUSSW alumni, faculty and staff members, and graduates of the CADER certificate programs, who will partner with organizations on a wide range of subjects. The Network curriculum team will develop a 3-course certificate program designed to ‘train the trainer,’ which will be required for all members of the Trainers Hub.
With a goal to foster knowledge sharing and collaboration, The Network will create a place for health and social services professionals to share their experience and skills, and train others as part of a supportive, committed, forward-looking community of practice.
Bronwyn Keefe, PhD, MPH, MSW, and director of both programs in The Network says, “Our vision was to create something more compelling than just a continuing education platform or a workforce development solution that any other university can replicate. The BUSSW community possesses a unique strength as pioneers of knowledge and impact in the field of social work. This community of expert faculty, researchers, alumni and practitioners, allows us to create a robust resource network the market has not seen before.”
Boston University’s DL&I‘s Digital Education Incubator provided funding for this lifelong learning initiative and supported the creation of the interactive database and website.
“The Incubator team is excited to support and fund this effort to pilot innovative ways to engage the Boston University alumni network,” says Digital Initiatives Director Romy Ruukel. “By leveraging qualified alumni to provide nationwide workforce development training, this project creates novel opportunities for them to continue to be engaged with BUSSW and to further their knowledge and skills through lifelong learning and graduate opportunities.”