posted on July 01, 2014 11:35
With the 3RNet membership structure only allowing for one member per state, anytime there is a new member, it is an exciting opportunity for 3RNet. 3RNet members across the nation carry out our mission of ensuring healthcare access to rural and underserved America. 3RNet’s newest member, Stacy Kusler, is already hard at work serving the rural and underserved residents of North Dakota.
The first few weeks of a new job are often a time of transition, so when Kusler was approached on her first day about potentially helping with the North Dakota Center for Rural Health’s R-COOL-Health Scrubs Academy, a health career camp that introduces middle school students to careers in health care through interactive sessions and activities, she was excited to be able to contribute right away. This middle school career camp turned out to be a four day, three night event where Stacy lead a group of 10 students in exploring health careers from 7:00am to 10:00pm.
Despite the long days in her first couple of weeks, Stacy had a great experience, “the kids loved Scrubs Academy – it was a tremendous chance for them to explore and learn more about health careers in a hands on sort of way”. Overall, forty two students attended the R-COOL-Health Scrubs Academy, put on by Stacy’s new employer.
During the course of the experience, students learned that the healthcare system relies on many different types of professionals, not just doctors and nurses. Students got to experience hands on activities while learning about careers in physical therapy, pharmacy, nutrition, sleep medicine, and many more. The event was held in Grand Forks, North Dakota on the campus of the University of North Dakota. Local health care providers volunteered their time to lead sessions and educate students about (and show off!) their various careers.
As for Kusler’s role, she served as a group leader, meaning she was responsible for her group of kids for the entirety of the Academy. In addition to helping with a tremendously successful academy, Kusler has been busy learning the everyday tasks of her new job, which centers on helping rural health care facilities in North Dakota find qualified health care providers at no cost to the facility (this service and Kusler’s position are funding through funds appropriated by the State of North Dakota). As the 3RNet member in North Dakota, Kusler serves as the trusted resource for rural and underserved facilities, and healthcare candidates interested in North Dakota. She provides the best information for candidates interested in the state, in a non-biased way. Working with Kusler, healthcare facilities are able to save tens of thousands of dollars a year compared to working with for-profit recruiters.
As she continues to get adjusted to her new role, Kusler plans to continue to help with the annual Scrubs Academy, which just completed its fourth year. But for now, she appreciates the chance to get to work with the healthcare facilities that keep rural North Dakota healthy and economically viable.
For more information on the R-Cool-Health Scrubs Academy, visit the Center for Rural Health website at http://ruralhealth.und.edu/projects/scrubs-program, and to learn more about careers in North Dakota, visit https://www.3rnet.org/locations/north-dakota.