Anchorage, Alaska: Alaska Pacific University (APU) is excited to announce the launch of four new degree programs centered on developing culturally competent healthcare professionals. These new programs build upon a commitment by APU to provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to enter Alaska’s healthcare workforce. This fall, students can elect to enroll in the following new academic programs:
- Associate of Applied Science in Health Occupations
- Pre-Nursing, leading to an Associate’s Degree in Nursing
- Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences
- Bachelor of Science in Environmental Public Health
APU President Dr. Robert Onders highlights the effect these new programs will have on Alaska’s workforce and communities: “Alaska is a unique healthcare environment, and we recognize that the demands for skilled healthcare professionals who understand the needs of our communities continues to grow. We are committed to designing academic programs that address Alaska’s workforce needs and build resilience in Alaska’ peoples and communities. Students will develop the knowledge and skills necessary to impact the communities they intend to serve.”
Featuring a registered apprenticeship or comparable educational program, the Health Occupations degree provides foundational knowledge and experience in high-demand healthcare service fields. The program gives students a choice between five concentrations including Billing and Coding, Electronic Health Record Specialist, Medical Administrative Assistant, Community Health Worker and Clinical Medical Assistant. APU is partnering with the Alaska Primary Care Association and employers throughout the state to integrate the apprenticeships.
The Health Science degree prepares students to work in health-related fields in several capacities and prepares them for graduate study and professional careers in the health sciences. Students have a choice between the following concentrations: Pre-Health, Pre-Nursing, Behavioral Health or Healthcare Management. Students completing the pre-Nursing concentration may apply to the Associated Degree in Nursing after their first semester.
Graduates of the new Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Public Health will address issues critical to infrastructure, climate, and health in Alaska. The degree combines campus and field-based learning, including industry certifications, to prepare students for careers in a variety of public health fields and graduate school in the health sciences.
APU Provost Dr. Hilton Hallock shares the importance of integrating flexibility into the new academic programs. “These new academic programs offer students the flexibility to complete the necessary training for entrance into the workforce,” said Dr. Hallock. “Providing various pathways to degree completion is an important commitment we make to our students ensuring they reach their professional goals.”