Community Health Worker Education

Summit Academy OIC in North Minneapolis offers training to become a Community Health Worker.

Assignment:  Go to Summit Academy to find out who takes the Community Health Worker training and how people playing this role make a difference in the community.  SA staff have offered to connect us with current students and graduates of the program.

Background info:   As our health care system changes, new roles are created that lack definition and standards.  Here’s a blurb from a website called Explore Health Careers dot org that lays out some of the problem:

Throughout the United States, the community health worker field is burgeoning, both in interest and demand, yet the practice lacks definition, standards and openly available training opportunities. The field is also rapidly expanding into new areas of health and community wellness as community health workers continue to improve chronic disease management programs, health insurance enrollment, immunization drives, HIV/AIDS treatment, access to mental health services and maternal-child health interventions.

Here’s some info from Summit Academy

Community health workers (CHWs) play a significant role in breaking down barriers and access to healthcare – particularly in low-income areas. CHWs work with healthcare organizations to bridge the gap between cultures through education and outreach. Currently more than 100 organizations employ CHWs.

Recently Summit Academy OIC expanded its training for CHWs by offering night and weekend classes. Students who participate in the 50-week night and weekend program receive training in client advocacy, health education, health system navigation and community outreach. (The program can be completed within 20 weeks for students able to attend the full-time courses, offered from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. weekdays.) Summit also provides job placement services for its graduates.

Summit is a nonprofit accredited educational and vocational training center in North Minneapolis that empowers adults residing in the most economically depressed neighborhoods in the Twin Cities to become educated, employed, contributing members of the community.



10 thoughts on “Community Health Worker Education”

  1. Dale-

    I would be interested in jumping on this, but I have some time constraints these next few weeks. What’s your timeline for this piece?



    1. Amanda, the training program is ongoing. A 12 month evening/weekend sequence began in November. There is a quicker 20 week version for people who can attend training during the day on weekdays. Could you get it done by the end of January?


      1. Sorry for the slow response. I should be able to do this by the end of January. Let me do some research tomorrow and get back to you.

        Thanks for your patience,


  2. Is there someone that you’ve been in contact with that would be best to email to set up a time to talk with people involved in this program? Or should I just email the contact on their website?


    1. After I left that message I found her on their website and shot her a message. Sorry, I should have let you know. We’ve been chatting and should have something going soon!


  3. Hey Dale! I wanted to update you on my progress with this: Laura connected me to a man named Steve Shedivy who’s been helping me set up interviews. He’s mentioned two current students and two graduates that would talk with me. I’m aiming to do those over the phone next week at KFAI (I’ll go on the website and make sure there’s studio availability.) I’m also trying to line up an interview with someone from their instructional staff which would (hopefully) be conducted AT the school.

    There ya have it!


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