posted on August 23, 2016 14:43
This post comes to us from our North Dakota 3RNet member, Stacy Kusler:
As the 3RNet member for North Dakota, I am always on the lookout for new and better ways to help our rural North Dakota communities connect with potential candidates in the medical field. The thing I love about 3RNet is that, as soon as I start thinking that I need something, an opportunity just happens to pop up! At the 3RNet Annual Conference last year in Portland, I was able to connect with the Idaho 3RNet member who told me about a successful event they held every year called “Meet the Residents”. That was what started the ball rolling to what would eventually become the Community Showcase event series in our state. You can read more about the entire event here (the article starts on page 18). For a brief overview of the event, read on.
Together with a member from our Office of Primary Care, we put on four separate job-fair-like events in four communities within a five-week period. We called our events “Community Showcase” events because we wanted those communities (healthcare facilities) in attendance to realize the importance of telling candidates about what they could expect personally in addition to the professional requirements. We charged each community a $100 booth fee to help towards any costs we would incur along the way, of which we had very few. We were able to find space that was free for us to use in each of our four communities, and we also had all of the appetizers donated to us by a sponsoring healthcare organization. Our costs included door prizes at each event, along with a few miscellaneous fees for printing and marketing.
On the attendee side of things, we invited third and fourth year medical students to each event, and also extended the invitation to residents. Our events were more heavily attended by the medical students. At the events, each community in attendance was able to set up a booth. We limited displays to table-top only to make certain everyone was on equal playing ground. We also limited booths to bringing only two people, ideally a physician and member of the administrative team. We had an hour of socializing, mingling, and munching on provided appetizers. We then had a presentation portion of the event. Each community was given five minutes to talk about their community to the entire audience. They could show slides if they wanted. After each community presented, we had each student and resident get up and introduce themselves and tell us about their home towns and the area of medicine they were going into. We then closed with more time for the communities to connect with the students and residents. Our events took place from 5pm to 8pm on either a Wednesday or Thursday night. We had great feedback from our communities and people really seemed to enjoy the equal time that they received to present to the whole audience.
We are looking forward to continuing these events in 2017. If anyone would like more information on how we organized these events, please feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.