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White Memorial Medical Center

Since 2002, the White Memorial Health Careers Program has been empowering local residents to build their dreams of becoming health care professionals equipped to provide competent in-language, culturally sensitive care for the growing Latino population.

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In partnership with White Memorial Medical Center (WMMC), the TELACU Education Foundation recruits bilingual and bicultural Rio Hondo Nursing School students to participate in this comprehensive program. In addition to receiving financial assistance to cover books, tuition, and living expenses, Program participants are provided with a support system and broad spectrum of services which include: professional development seminars, one-on-one counseling and guidance, the Kaplan NCLEX-RN preparation course, résumé building and interviewing skills coaching. A full 100% of participants not only graduate, but also achieve Registered Nurse (RN) licensure.

Program participants also participate in two rigorous training courses that further empower them to elevate the delivery of health care in underserved communities by providing competent in-language, culturally sensitive care:

Cultural Competency Nursing Care: A Cornerstone of Caring

Sponsored by the Office of Minority Health and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this nine-hour course equips students with awareness, knowledge, and skills to enhance the treatment of the increasingly culturally diverse patient populations.

Health Care Interpreter Training

This 40-hour course, provided by PALS for Health, empowers students to appropriately understand effective strategies to providing accurate in-language care to limited English-speaking populations. All students pass the exam and receive a certificate.

Upon completion of the Program, WMMC offers graduates employment in high acuity units, and today, these professionals comprise more than 25% of the Hospital’s nursing staff and 30% of RN Spanish-language interpreters. Quickly becoming part of WMMC’s caring culture, they enhance the quality of services and help shape policy through service and leadership positions on the Hospital’s numerous committees. As Department Charge Nurses and Preceptors, Program graduates mentor and educate nursing school students at the Hospital. Additionally, these nurses are consistently recognized by various medical organizations and the Hospital for their exemplary contributions to the field of nursing.

For a growing number, achieving their RN licensure is but the first milestone in their rewarding educational and professional journey. Recognizing the value of improving patient care, safety and outcomes, WMMC provides graduates with exceptional opportunities for advancement, including encouragement and support to pursue their Bachelor’s degree in Nursing—and even advanced degrees. To support them in pursuit of these opportunities, the Program’s one-on-one guidance and counseling continues through their Bachelor’s and Master’s program admissions process; those interested in securing leadership and management positions within the Hospital are placed on specific leadership tracks.

Violeta Lewis, a Program graduate working in White Memorial’s Pediatric Unit, went on to earn her Bachelor’s and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Nursing. Like so many TELACU Scholars, her commitment to service extends far beyond business hours; not only does she care for her patients, she now cares for the entire City of La Puente as its new Mayor!