In the following interview, John McLeod, director of the UNC Press Office of Scholarly Publishing Services discusses the Journal of Best Practices in Health Professions Diversity: Research, Education and Policy with editor-in-chief Dr. Peggy Valentine.
Dr. Valentine is dean and professor at the School of Health Sciences at Winston-Salem State University, a constituent of the University of North Carolina system. She founded the peer reviewed Journal of Best Practices in Health Professions Diversity: Research, Education and Policy (J Best Pract Health Prof Divers) in 2007 to provide a forum for the discussion of factors that promote or constrain the development and sustainability of a diverse health professions workforce. Dr. Valentine oversees Winston-Salem State University educational programs in Clinical Laboratory Science, Exercise Physiology, Healthcare Management, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Rehabilitation Counseling. She has clinical experience as a registered nurse and physician assistant and has conducted research on homeless and minority issues. She is actively engaged with a number of state and national groups and institutions including the board of trustees for Novant Health Medical Group, the Department of Health and Human Services Advisory Committee on Community-Based Interdisciplinary Linkages, the Consortium on International Management Policy and Development, the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions, and the National Society of Allied Health.
Dr. Peggy Valentine: I was inspired by the 2004 Sullivan Commission’s Report on “Missing Persons in the Health Professions,” and felt the need to provide a forum for educators, researchers and others to share their research, experiences in their programs, and offer potential solutions.
JM: What do you see as some of the biggest challenges and opportunities the healthcare professions face today in terms of achieving better diversity?
PV: The greatest challenge in achieving diversity is knowledge. Diverse students are often unaware of the variety of health disciplines and the educational requirements to be competitive. Many are unaware of available resources and lack mentors who can point them in the right direction.A challenge exists for faculty and administrators of educational programs who may also lack knowledge on how to best recruit and retain diverse students. Finally, the health care industry is challenged in recruiting diverse employees. It has been my observation that organizations with set goals and strategies in place to achieve a diverse workforce are more successful, especially when diversity is a high priority at all levels, including upper levels of management.
JM: You recently formed a partnership with the National Association of Medical Minority Educators which now offers the journal as a member benefit. Tell us a little bit about the NAMME and their mission. Continue reading ‘Interview: Dr. Peggy Valentine on the Journal of Best Practices in Health Professions Diversity’ »