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NAO Update
February 13, 2012

1. From the Executive Director‘s Office
I hope you all are doing well and putting the finishing touches on your AHEC grants; best of luck as they get wrapped up!

I'm looking forward to attending the Baltimore Veterans' Mental Health Train-The-Trainer (TTT) Workshop February 21-22, 2012, and I'm thrilled to let you all know that we'll have great external representation at this workshop. There will be three HRSA representatives and leaders from the American Nurses Association—a potential new NAO organizational partner. We had a provisional acceptance for representation from the Office of the First Lady's Joining Forces (JF) Initiative, though they had to cancel late last week. I will try to get someone from JF to attend a future TTT. The Baltimore Train-the-Trainer—and the remaining ones scheduled—is a great way to highlight NAO and AHEC's network and national capacity to effect change on a number of levels; please make every effort to attend one of the remaining eight workshops. For more information and the complete workshop schedule, visit the A-TrACC website.

A while ago I asked that all the AHEC Programs send me a one- or two-page brief summary of AHEC state impact and data that I can use as a quick reference point in the event that I get a request from a Congressional staffer or external partner regarding a particular component of our work. You'd be surprised to know how frequently this occurs. I will be heading to Washington soon and meeting with Appropriations Committee members, as well as others, and the more data documenting our impact I have, the more effective my message can be. I've received data from a handful of states, and I'd love to get as much as I can in order to make the most compelling argument regarding AHEC's impact nationally. Please send me what you can, and preferably before the end of March; thanks!

Finally, I want to share a brief story with you all. Last week while running early in the morning with a friend and his brother-in-law, who was visiting from out of town, we got to talking about our work, and, during the course of the run, the brother-in-law (also named Rob) mentioned that he owns a small multimedia marketing and communications firm in Vermont. As I described our national network and the various initiatives in which we're engaged, Rob asked that I send him the link to our website so he could give a look and provide some general feedback. Given that I'm always open to free feedback whenever offered, I sent him the link to the NAO website, and, after he had a chance to review, this is what he said: "AHEC rocks! What tremendous and vital work you all are doing! And given that you are overhauling your site, you are primed, as an emerging network, to collaboratively tell your story through social media and other new digital media tools in some innovative ways."

Hearing this was confirmation that we're all doing some incredible work, and, while I understand there may have been some fishing for new business, his feedback did spur my thinking as to how we tell the NAO and AHEC story, locally and nationally. I am thrilled that the NAO Branding initiative is underway, which gives us a formal structure to market NAO and the AHEC network and enhance our national visibility, though how we tell our story informally every single day to those who matter is something I think needs to be part of our thinking as well. Using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other methods to tell our story is vitally important, and I am sure there are more tools that I'm not totally familiar with yet (foursquare, Instagram?). I encourage you all to think how you can regularly tell the story of your AHEC to those who matter as a means to share your successes, strive for sustainability, and meet NAO's, your Center's and your Program's mission. I look forward to hearing your stories; please be sure to put them on the NAO Facebook page regularly: There's so much great work going on all throughout the country, and no one will tell our story for us.

Have a great week!

2. Upcoming A-TrACC Trainings

AHEC Project for Veterans/Service Members & Families Mental & Behavioral Health
Veterans Mental Health – TA Webinar 208T-A: Signs & Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury
Dr. James P. Kelly, B.A., M.S., M.D., Director, The National Intrepid Center of Excellence, a component center of the Defense Centers of Excellence, will discuss the incidence of TBI in service members and explain strategies service members and their families use to overcome problems. Dr. Kelly is a neurologist and one of America's top experts on treating concussions.
Register: February 23, 1:30 PM ET

2012 Performance Measures
A-TrACC Webinar 216T-A&B. A-TrACC Field Guide Suggestions: Collecting and Reporting Continuing Education (CE) for BHPr Performance Measures - a component of AHEC Professional Education and Support Activities led by Mary Wainwright, A-TrACC Project Director, and Gretchen Forsell, A-TrACC Project Manager.
Register: Feb. 27, 3:00 PM ET
Register: March 2, Noon ET (repeat session)

Vets Mental Health Train-The-Trainer Workshops
Why go to Denver in early March? For the FREE Denver Vets Mental Health TTT on March 6 & 7 of course. Spring skiing could be an enticing fringe benefit, though! At this workshop you will learn how to organize continuing education offerings for civilian healthcare providers on the behavioral/mental health issues of veterans and service members returning from combat. Every center sending staff to a TTT workshop can get up to $1000 to support CE on this topic.
Contact Kris Wenzel to register.
For more information and the complete workshop schedule visit the A-TrACC website.
To view recordings of past VMH webinars visit the A-TrACC Vets Mental Health Resource Room.
For more information contact

3. Nominate Your Center for an AHEC Award
Don't wait any longer to nominate your AHEC for one of the AHEC Center Awards for Excellence, which will be given at the NAO Conference in San Antonio this summer. Nominate one of your health careers programs that has had a particularly powerful impact on recruiting students into health careers. Consider nominating a community-based student experience developed by your AHEC in collaboration with an academic partner to provide health science students with a unique community experience. These and other opportunities are available to centers, and the application process is easy. Simply click on the links below and complete the short application to nominate your center for one of these prestigious awards.

Questions? Contact Tom Bacon or Suzanne Matthew, Awards Committee Co-Chairs, if you have an idea but aren't sure if it is worthy of an award nomination.

Suzanne Matthew (WI)
Awards Committee Co-Chair

Tom Bacon (NC)
Awards Committee Co-Chair

4. Allegiance Corps Request: Qualifications Due April 6, 2012
Northwestern Connecticut AHEC is requesting qualifications from AHECs who are interested in participating in the Allegiance Corps Program as an AmeriCorps member host site.

The Allegiance Corps Program will place 20 full-time AmeriCorps members at AHECs across the nation to develop a public health approach that meets the increasing health and social support needs of service members, veterans and their families.

The AHEC Program is uniquely positioned to provide AmeriCorps members with the resources necessary to bring about positive sustainable change in the lives of service members, veterans and their families, a growing medically underserved population. Building synergy between the AmeriCorps mission of mobilizing volunteers to create solutions to our nation's toughest challenges with the AHEC mission of improving health care for vulnerable populations will provide innumerable benefits to our military families.

Please use the following link to learn more about this opportunity and how to submit a proposal.

5. Support for State/Regional Quality of Life Programs
Walmart Foundation State Giving Program
The Walmart Foundation State Giving Program awards grants to nonprofit organizations at the state and regional level throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico for programs that give individuals access to a better life. The program provides grants of $25,000 and up in the following categories: Education grants support programs that address the educational needs of underserved young people, ages 12-25. Workforce Development/Economic Opportunity grants promote job readiness and skills training as well as support services for workers with low to moderate skills. Health and Wellness grants strive to improve access to healthcare, reduce healthcare disparities, and promote nutrition. Environmental Sustainability grants focus on production systems that sustain people and the environment by reducing waste, and promoting energy efficiency and the use of renewable resources. Initiatives that integrate hunger relief, women's economic empowerment, or veterans' issues into the grant categories are of special interest. The upcoming application deadline is March 2, 2012. Visit the Foundation's website to submit an online application.

6. Content for the Next Monday Update Will be Due February 15, 2012 at Noon CST
Content for the Monday Update coming out on Monday, February 20 will be due this Wednesday, February 15 by noon CST. Due to the tight timeline, we will be unable to accept late submissions. Thanks!

Mission Statement: The National AHEC Organization supports and advances the AHEC Network to improve health by leading the nation in the recruitment, training and retention of a diverse health workforce for underserved communities.

© National AHEC Organization | 7044 S. 13th Street, Oak Creek, WI 53154 | 414-908-4953 x131|
Executive Director Rob Trachtenberg | 414-908-4953 |

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