The Union Recorder

Local News

February 25, 2013

Georgia College hosts diversity in health care panel

MILLEDGEVILLE — Learn about the range of career possibilities underrepresented in health care during the second annual “Embracing Diversity in the Healthcare Workforce” panel.

The event begins at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Georgia College’s Magnolia Ballroom.

Georgia College’s College of Health Sciences and Magnolia Coastal Area Health Education Center will sponsor the panel. The event is free and open to the public.

“By 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor estimates 2.4 million new health care workers are needed, which will include an increasing demand for a diverse workforce,” said Toyia Barnes, chair of the College of Health Sciences Diversity Committee. “This panel will help educate our students, the campus and local community about the impact a diverse health care workforce can make and bring attention to the various career fields available to underrepresented groups.”

During the interactive panel discussion, participants will explore the various health professions underrepresented; hear personal success stories from panelists and education requirements of their professionals; understand ways to overcome barriers to achieve career success; and learn how to take advantage of opportunities by asking the right questions and seeking advice concerning career choices.

The following health care professionals working in Georgia’s rural communities will lead the panel: 

• Dr. Kwame Amponsah, neurologist, The Georgia Neurosurgical Institute;

• Dr. Cheryl Gaddis, public health administrator, Center for Rural Health and Health Disparities;

• Dr. Joy Prichett, audiologist, Hearing Associates, PC;

• Ms. Ana Quinlan, physical therapist, MCG Health Inc.;

• Ms. Diane Rogers, Georgia College nursing alumnus, Smith Nursing Care Center;

• Dr. Monali Sakhalkar, ophthalmologist, Middle Georgia Ophthalmology; and

• Dr. Solomon I. Okosun, epidemiologist and associate professor, Georgia State University.

“This year’s panel features a variety of health professions not represented previously,” said Dr. Martha Colvin, associate dean for the College of Health Sciences. “The panel encourages young people to think of other health-related professions such as epidemiology, audiology and public health administration. We also encourage parents to attend with their middle and high school children so these students understand that the educational pathway for a health profession begins early. A diverse body of students in health professions schools today will ensure a stronger and more diverse health workforce tomorrow.”

For more information, call 478-445-4072.

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