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The Native Healthcare Engineering Internship: Interprofessional Approaches to Improving Rural Healthcare

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Conference

2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Engineering Management Division Technical Session 1: Programs, Pedagogies, and Practices

Tagged Division

Engineering Management

Tagged Topic

Diversity

Page Count

12

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/28987

Download Count

88

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Paper Authors

biography

Charlee Millett Montana State University

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I'm an undergraduate nursing student at Montana State University. Originally from Anchorage, AK, and I am involved with Caring for Our Own Program (CO-OP), which is for American Indian/Alaska Native students.

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biography

William J. Schell IV P.E. Montana State University Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-8626-1671

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William J. Schell holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering – Engineering Management from the University of Alabama in Huntsville and M.S. and B.S. degrees in Industrial and Management Engineering from Montana State University (MSU). He is an Assistant Professor in Industrial and Management Systems Engineering at MSU with research interests in engineering education and the role of leadership and culture in process improvement. He serves as an Associate Editor for both the Engineering Management Journal and Quality Approaches in Higher Education. Prior to his academic career, he spent 14 years in industry where he held leadership and executive positions focused on process improvement and organizational development.

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biography

Sandra Wilson Kuntz Montana State University

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Sandra W. Kuntz, PhD, RN is an associate professor at Montana State University, College of Nursing on the Missoula Campus. Her research focuses on environmental health, including methylmercury risk and exposure in human populations, health disparities, and community-based participatory approaches in rural and Native American communities. Dr. Kuntz has served on the United States Environmental Health Protection Agency, Child Health Protection Advisory Committee.

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biography

Durward K. Sobek Montana State University

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Dr. Sobek is Professor and Program Coordinator of Industrial Engineering at Montana State University. He holds M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Industrial and Operations Engineering from The University of Michigan, and the A.B. degree in Engineering Science from Dartmouth College.

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Abstract

Industry and engineering accreditors alike recognize the need for engineers who function well on interdisciplinary teams. To meet this need, undergraduate engineering programs often include project-based course work that brings a variety of engineering disciplines together for work on an engineering design problem. Studies show these courses increase the diversity of ideas and styles that engineering students are exposed to during their education. However, educators must also recognize that merely bringing different engineers together is a poor representation of the groups with which engineers must work collaboratively while in industry. Montana State University has a lengthy track record of developing graduate interprofessional education between the colleges of engineering and nursing. A new program, the Native Healthcare Engineering Internship, was recently piloted to expand this experience to undergraduate students. The program partners undergraduate engineering and nursing students to work with industry in order to improve the operations of rural healthcare centers in Montana. Through this program, students not only gain experience working on an interprofessional team, they also work to address key challenges facing our nation and Montana. The costs of the health care system in the United States have rapidly become a critical national issue. Health care spending currently absorbs over 17% of GDP, nearly twice the average of the 34 OECD member nations and nearly 1.5 times the next highest country. While prior research has generated meaningful improvements in health care delivery, the vast majority of this activity focuses on improvements in large urban centers, which has placed “rural communities . . . at the margins of the health care quality movement [with] most quality initiatives . . . not directly applicable to rural health care settings.” This work explores the design of the internship program, the challenges of interprofessional education and approaching improvement projects in rural healthcare settings, and the benefits the partner organizations and students received from the experience.

Millett, C., & Schell, W. J., & Kuntz, S. W., & Sobek, D. K. (2017, June), The Native Healthcare Engineering Internship: Interprofessional Approaches to Improving Rural Healthcare Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. https://peer.asee.org/28987

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