School of Health Professions, Public Service Programs and Social Sciences
The School of Health Professions, Public Service Programs and Social Sciences offers diverse options connected by the characteristic of service, helping and health. These “real world” programs lead to degrees and certificates which gets graduates job-ready.
The faculty brings hands-on life experience to the classroom and the programs are typically designed as career ladders, giving you a clear path from entry-level to advanced credentials. Certificates can be completed in 12 to 15 months and give you practical workforce skills that position you for employment.
For example, after completing the General Studies – Allied Health certificate or degree program, a student may choose move on to the practical nursing certificate, providing them the opportunity to sit for licensure and become a licensed practical nurse. After that, the student can pursue an Associate’s degree and ultimately attain licensure as a registered nurse.
Here are just some of the options and programs the School offers:
- Physical Therapist Assistant: This program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Accreditation, offered in alternating years, at both Devens and Gardner campuses, provides an opportunity for a career in the allied health field. All faculty members have attained doctoral degrees in Physical Therapy and maintain clinical. In addition, the program has beneficial connections with clinics, giving students hands-on experience prior to program completion.
- Dental Hygiene: This program accredited by the Council on Dental Accreditation, is unique in that it provides students the opportunity to work with real patients and dentists through a collaboration with an on-site community based dental clinic. In January 2012, the dental clinic and the dental hygiene program will move to a new state-of-the-art facility. This move will provide students the most up-to-date experiences to prepare them for professional practice.
- Human Services: This program provides graduates the skills to assist individuals with cognitive and behavioral challenges, living in the community, to meet their day to day needs. Close relationships with local agencies insures that the curriculum is up to date and reflects current practice. This program offers internships with area agencies and has strong relationships with these facilities. Directors of these agencies sit on an advisory board for the program, ensuring that the curriculum is constantly updated and improved to reflect current practice.
- Exercise Science: This program attracts students at all levels, from those looking to start careers as personal trainers to other roles within the fitness industry. This program has an articulation agreement with Fitchburg State University for a bachelor’s degree and offers students great potential to advance their skills and knowledge.
- Nursing: These programs accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) offer a variety of options for entry and advancement within the nursing profession. Students can elect to complete a one year practical nursing certificate. The two year associate degree, with day and evening option, offers students the opportunity to attain licensure as a registered nurse. Created only one year ago, the new LPN to RN Bridge program is specially designed for working Practical Nurses. At completion the program gives graduates an Associate’s degree and the credentials to sit for licensure as a registered nurse. It is a 12 month hybrid program with one Saturday a month in the classroom, online course work, and one 12 hour clinical day per week.