FY19 Students and Early Careerists Task Force Year-End Recap

HIMSS Mission, “to reform the global health ecosystem by leveraging the power of information and technology. By creating an informed and empowered community of providers, innovators and individuals…” is not limited to just seasoned veterans of health IT. The Students and Early Careerists Task Force was set up in 2018 with the intent of making high quality education and career tools easily accessible to all of the members of the Early Careerists and New Graduate communities of HIMSS and to anyone looking to become a part of those communities.

Mission Statement
“The HIMSS Students and Early Careerists Task Force will work to promote and advance these services by enhancing our focus on this targeted population of the potential and current workforce within health information and technology. Services and initiatives will be designed, maintained and continually built upon to attract and engage with those considering the health information and technology industry as well as for those just beginning their journey. Tools, resources, content and activities is developed for all levels of members, i.e. new members, existing members, and non-members, to grow professionally in their careers.”

Team Goals For Year One and Beyond
Goal number one was to form the team. Limited invitations were sent out to members of the Early Careerists and New Graduate communities based on feedback and recommendations we received from Program Directors and Faculty from Approved Education Partners (AEPs) and Academic Organizational Affiliates (AOAs) who work with and support students and early careerist members. Faculty leaders from HIMSS AEPs were also invited to participate, as were students who previously participated as Program Assistants at the global conference (and were “rock stars”). All members of the Task Force serve on a voluntary basis. The understanding from each invitee to become a member of the task force was that their ideas not only mattered, but their ideas were required.

Goal number two was to plan and develop the Student Institute held at HIMSS19. Sponsor organizations helped bring two fantastic sessions to a group of more than 150 students and early careerists. Bonnie Siegel opened the Institute with a session focused on ‘Health IT Career Success’. Bonnie’s session was followed by a panel of health IT educators and a recent graduate who answered questions and provided their insights on skills employers are looking for when hiring recent grads.

Beyond the HIMSS19 focus, with guidance from the HIMSS leadership of Mara Daiker, Stefan Werdegar, and DonVielle Young we expanded the educational programing available to early careerists through the Early Careerists Webinar Series and the addition of the New Graduate Webinar Series. The Early Careerists Webinar series is intended to help expand the tools that are needed for one to grow their expertise in the exciting field of healthcare information and technology whereas the New Graduate Webinar Series is designed to be a panel discussion series designed for current or recent graduates to increase their success in the job market. Both have offered valuable sessions such as the New Graduate Panel- Landing Your First Job as well as Expectations and Strategies for a Job Search among others. Check out the schedule of upcoming sessions.

Also new this year is the Recruitment Insights Blog Series, which kicked off in April 2019. The focus of the recruitment blog series is to provide content for those hiring or looking to hire students and early careerists. The April installment titled, “Opening the Door for Non-Traditional Students.” was followed in May with a post titled, “Health Information…There’s a Degree for That?!”. Check out the schedule on the Recruitment Insights Blog site for upcoming blog topics.

Under Construction
Unlike a certain family amusement park associated with a certain mouse, where construction and maintenance are done behind the scenes or out of sight of guests, we are actively and thoughtfully making improvements to the Early Careerists Community pages and all resources for this audience. The idea is to make tools and resources as easy to find as possible for HIMSS student members and those seeking trusted HIMSS content for career advancement. Some improvements have already taken place with the anticipation that more will be coming as a result of feedback received from the HIMSS Students Survey (June 2019). The focus of the student survey is to identify content that students are looking for that will help position them for career advancement in Health IT. If you have ideas or comments on the work the Students and Early Careerists Task Force has done this year or ideas for upcoming events, please reach out to earlycareerists@himss.org. We are always looking for great ideas.

Task Force Roster
Thank you to this year’s Students and Early Careerists Task Force volunteer members:
Wil Limp – Educator – Chair
Nan Abbott
David Gibbs – Educator
David Marc – Educator
Nick Martinez
Kayla Meeks
Mariah Rathkamp
Krista Reinhart
Stephanie Tatum
Lisa Thompson
Mara Daiker – HIMSS
Stefan Werdegar – HIMSS
DonVielle Young – HIMSS

Wil Limp serves as the Program Director for the UW HIMT on-line Bachelor Degree program as well as UW Healthcare Administration Master’s Degree. Wil serves as the Chair for the Student and Early Careerists Task Force for HIMSS, as well as the Chair of the Workshop and Webinar Team for Wisconsin AHIMA. He is also part of the HIMSS Approved Education Partner Program.