BINGHAMTON — The presidents of SUNY Broome Community College and SUNY Empire State College on Nov. 7 announced a new partnership “making it easier” for SUNY Broome students to advance their health-care careers with an online bachelor’s degree in allied health from SUNY Empire State College.
It represents the first partnership in New York that helps students with an associate degree in an allied health field to pursue a bachelor’s degree, Empire State College said in a Nov. 7 news release.
The agreement provides guaranteed admission for eligible students in SUNY Broome’s dental hygiene, health-information technology, medical assistant, physical-therapy assistant, and radiologic technology associate-degree programs into SUNY Empire’s bachelor of science in allied health program. SUNY Empire will waive the orientation fee for transfer students, provide a $100 Presidential Scholarship, and support the students in their transition to online learning, the school said.
“Our partnership will streamline opportunities for SUNY Broome students in the health-care field to also earn a bachelor’s degree that works around their schedule,” SUNY Empire State College President Jim Malatras said. “It’s a win-win for the students and for many communities facing a shortage of qualified health workers in critical areas of need. We are always working to make higher education more accessible to everyone. I want to commend the faculty and staff at both institutions for making this first of its kind partnership possible.”
The demand for health-care workers between now and 2020 “is projected to grow nearly twice as fast as the national economy in the U.S.,” per the release. Allied health professionals — which include a range of health-care practitioners who are not doctors, nurses, or dentists — make up about 60 percent of the health-care workforce, “with more and more jobs requiring bachelor’s and master’s degrees.”
The “flexible” online bachelor’s degree at SUNY Empire is designed to help working health-care practitioners advance their careers with a degree that focuses on core competencies for health-care professionals, which prepares them to “improve outcomes” for individuals, families, and communities.
“This partnership is a win not only for our students, but for our region’s health-care providers, who are in great need of trained allied-health professionals,” SUNY Broome President Kevin Drumm said.
“The program provides an opportunity for seamless academic progression to the bachelor of science degree and beyond,” Kim Stote, associate dean for the SUNY Empire School of Nursing and Allied Health, added. “The bachelor of science in allied health degree option will allow students to gain the additional knowledge, skills and competencies to move into new roles within health care and achieve personal and professional goals.”