Employee Coaching and Education Benefits for Healthcare Workers Boosted Wages and Reduced Turnover

In collaboration with InsideTrack, the Education Fund is helping frontline healthcare workers access pathways to higher-wage jobs through an employee coaching and education benefits program


OAKLAND, CALIF. (November 21, 2022) — The Education Fund—a partnership between 20 healthcare industry employers and 6 SEIU local unions to provide education and training benefits for over 100,000 eligible healthcare workers— today announced the results of a new case study on the impact of employee coaching and education benefits. Education benefits — paired with one-on-one success coaching — helped allied health workers develop new skills and advance professionally into higher-wage career pathways, while also reducing staff turnover.

“At a time when talent is in critically short supply, investing in the education, development and success of our people is essential for ensuring the quality of patient care and building a highly-skilled, highly-qualified and engaged healthcare workforce,” said Rebecca Hanson, executive director of the Education Fund. “This is a unique example of how employers, organized labor and educators can work together to drive professional advancement opportunities for workers while also meeting the evolving health and employment needs of communities. It’s a win-win-win.”

Nationally, there are more than 5 million allied healthcare professionals, or approximately 60% of the entire healthcare workforce. Demand for credentialed allied health professionals continues to rise. An estimated 2.3 million allied health workers will be needed nationally by 2024. The Education Fund has for years worked to close these workforce gaps, improve patient care and build a stronger healthcare workforce by providing no-cost education, training and career advice to more than 100,000 eligible workers.

Since 2019, the organization has partnered with student success experts from InsideTrack to maximize educational opportunities for learners by providing them with one-on-one coaching and wraparound support they need to complete training programs. During that time, the Education Fund has seen significant improvements in outcomes with its largest employer partner, Kaiser Permanente. Between 2019 and 2021, graduates from its programs more than doubled, driving significant increases in the number of trained and diverse personnel ready to move into crucial healthcare positions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Between September 2020 and December 2021, more than 2,050 eligible allied healthcare workers received one-on-one coaching from InsideTrack. Across all Education Fund programs, participants have seen their wages increase by an average of more than $15 per hour, and turnover among Education Fund learners was just 4% — one-fourth of the rate for all employees.

Most recently, the Education Fund tapped InsideTrack to provide coaching as part of a new Medical Assistant (MA) pathway program. Enrollment in the program surpassed its original goal by 140%, and 81% of the healthcare professionals who enrolled completed a certificate program in 2020-21 — setting hundreds of workers on a pathway to highly-skilled and higher-paying careers. According to the case study, 84% of MA participants said coaching helped to improve their overall experience in the program, manage time commitments and motivate them toward their goals.

“Attracting, retaining and developing our allied health workforce has a direct impact on real-world patient care and outcomes — and the ability of health systems to deliver cutting-edge care,” said Kai Drekmeier, co-founder and chief development officer at InsideTrack. “This collaboration is a powerful example of how the right education and training opportunities, coupled with personalized employee support, can help to meet the evolving needs of healthcare workers, employers and communities alike.”

For the second phase of this collaboration, the Education Fund will develop its own in-house employee coaching program with training and support from InsideTrack. Over the next three years, the Education Fund will develop a quality assurance program, create capacity to manage a coaching program and implement a “train-the-trainer” model to sustain the coaching program over time.

To read the entire case study from the Education Fund and InsideTrack, visit InsideTrack.org.

Learn more about the Education Fund’s partnership with Inside Track. – https://www.insidetrack.org/

About the SEIU-UHW West & Joint Employer Education Fund: The Education Fund is a labor management multi-employer training and education fund partnering with 20 healthcare employers and six SEIU local unions to serve 105,000 workers across California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico. Our mission is to empower the diverse healthcare workforce to advance in a changing environment through innovative education and training solutions. Our members are frontline caregivers, including respiratory care practitioners, dietary, environmental services and nursing staff who keep patients healthy, and clerical and support staff who keep medical facilities running smoothly. Our partners include some of the largest national healthcare employers and their unions.

About InsideTrack: InsideTrack is passionate about helping all learners achieve their education and career goals through the transformative power of coaching. Since 2001, we’ve served 2.9 million learners, partnering with more than 250 institutions and organizations to directly improve enrollment, persistence, completion and career readiness. Our coaching methodology is evidence-based and research-confirmed, with proven outcomes for every type of learner — from traditional to adult, part-time to full-time, online to in-person — including first-generation students and those who face systemic barriers to postsecondary success. We also work with partners to build internal coaching capacity through staff training and professional services — designed to sustain advances in-house for lasting, scalable impact. InsideTrack is a part of Strada Collaborative, a mission-driven nonprofit. To learn more, visit www.insidetrack.org. and follow us on Twitter @InsideTrack and LinkedIn @InsideTrack.

Program and service update

November 16, 2022 – We are excited to announce that we will soon be reopening select program applications. We know that many of our members rely on the Education Fund for their CEUs. With the end of the year approaching, we want to make sure you’re able to get your Continuing Education credits at no cost through the Education Fund.

Please check back for updates and an expected opening date for Continuing Education classes offered through providers such as CNA Zone and CE Direct on the Continuing Education section of our site. Our Continuing Education Reimbursement program is available now. We also have select critical skills and preparation courses available, with others opening up in the coming weeks.

The best way to see what’s available is to register for MyEdFund, our secure web portal. This is where all Education Fund program signups happen, so now is the time to get your login set up. MyEdFund is also the place to make an appointment with a Career Counselor/Regional Coordinator, which is a great first step and is required for certain Education Fund programs.

We are thankful for all of our members who have been in contact with us recently. We cannot express the depth of our appreciation for your patience as we’ve continued to work through the challenges and opportunities that have arisen as a result of the unprecedented response and interest in Education Fund programs this year. We look forward to serving you in the coming weeks and months.

Important Update: Education Fund Program Enrollment

September 13, 2022 – The Education Fund has experienced unprecedented interest and enrollments in our programs this year, and we’re proud to have supported so many healthcare workers with their education needs. We have also expanded to serving more than 20,000 learners annually and more than 3,000 in degree and certificate programs to advance their careers.

Since the pandemic, hospitals nationwide have identified an overwhelming need for frontline healthcare professionals. In a recent survey of our membership, we found that 65% of you have considered training into a new job in healthcare. The Education Fund collaborated with training providers to meet the demand of our learners, union and employer partners. None of us could anticipate the overwhelmingly high demand; consequently, we’ve reached our enrollment capacity for 2022 for many of our programs. As a result, we have currently paused Education Fund program applications.

Please be reassured that, regardless of your location, you can create an individualized educational plan for 2023 by making an appointment today with your Career Counselor/Regional Coordinator.

The Education Fund is completing a thorough review of learners already in the application process for programs at capacity. Expect to hear directly from the Education Fund soon regarding your application status. Once we complete our review of our enrollment and its impact on our budget, programs, and services, we will share updates on what will be available as soon as possible.

For now, your Career Counselor/Regional Coordinator is happy to discuss options and create a plan for your future education needs. If you have not yet done so, please register for MyEdFund, our secure web portal, to schedule time with your Career Counselor/Regional Coordinator.

This is also the perfect time to talk to your union and coworkers about securing an increased employer contribution to the Education Fund. The services we offer are helping to address the high turnover and staff shortages brought about by the pandemic. And this year’s unprecedented response, particularly to our Career Pathway opportunities, has demonstrated a need for increased training opportunities.

We are proud of the work you do each day, the extraordinary service you provide to your community, and your drive to better yourself and your family through education. We continue to draw inspiration from your strength and resiliency, and we look forward to continuing to serve you in 2023 and beyond.

The SEIU-UHW West & Joint Employer Education Fund relaunches updated pandemic-readiness training

January 27, 2021

Oakland, CA – The SEIU-UHW West & Joint Employer Education Fund (the Education Fund) – a multi-employer benefit trust providing education and training for union-represented healthcare employees – today announced it is launching an updated version of the online course Pandemic Readiness for frontline healthcare workers. The course now reflects information gained about COVID-19 through experiences of the past several months, as well as information related to vaccination.

The course relaunch is made possible through the collaborative effort of the Education Fund, Pima Medical Institute, Futuro Health, Kaiser Permanente, and SEIU-UHW, and follows the Spring 2020 launch of the original version. All employees who are eligible to receive Education Fund benefits may take the course at no cost, regardless of job classification or location.

The winter pandemic surge has underscored California’s ongoing critical need for workers to provide care, including LVNs/LPNs, respiratory therapists, medical assistants and certified nursing assistants. The Pandemic Readiness course provides these workers an opportunity to refresh their knowledge with the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 and treatment, while providing interested non-patient care workers with helpful tools and information related to the virus.

“The vaccine is here, so we have updated our training to ensure that caregivers have the critical information they need moving forward,” said Rebecca Hanson, Executive Director of the Education Fund. “Caregivers need our support now more than ever, and we will continue to find ways to get them the education and training they need to sustain themselves through the pandemic.”

The five-module pandemic readiness course, designed by Pima Medical and conducted entirely online, will take approximately six hours to complete. The modules cover topics including screening and testing, infection control techniques and precautions, ventilator management, stress management and resilience, and immunity and vaccines. Designed to be self-paced, the course can help prepare patient care workers to perform additional functions on the care team in preparation for a temporary expansion in their scope of work.

“Our ability to rise to the challenge and win the war against COVID-19 requires extraordinary coordination between healthcare organizations,” said Fred Freedman, CEO of Pima Medical. “The creation of proper training materials and procedures for our frontline professionals is a critical component. Pima Medical along with the Education Fund is proud to be part of the national solution.”

The Education Fund will offer digital badges upon successful completion of online coursework and accompanying competency assessments. The course augments and fortifies existing skillsets of healthcare workers amidst the COVID-19 environment, especially for those entities that may not have the resources to create their own training programs to upskill staff. This revised version will build on the 1,300 Education Fund-eligible union members who took the initial course, launched by Futuro Health, between April and October 2020.

“We are pleased our ecosystem of partners continue to keep the training relevant and free for the needs of the times,” said Van Ton-Quinlivan, CEO of Futuro Health. “Skillsets continue to shift during this unprecedented crisis.”

About The Education Fund: The SEIU-UHW & Joint Employer Education Fund is a multi-employer labor-management partnership serving 105,000 SEIU healthcare workers across 16 employers and 5 states to advance their careers through innovative education and training solutions.

About Pima Medical Institute: Founded in Tucson in 1972, Pima Medical has built a reputation as one of the best medical career colleges in the Western United States. Pima Medical’s mission is to improve the quality of people’s lives by providing the best value in medical career education. Pima Medical offers certificate, associate and bachelor’s degree programs – all in the healthcare field. It also has a robust online learning division. Programs focus on medical, dental and veterinary careers.

About Futuro Health: Futuro Health improves the health and wealth of communities by growing the largest network of credentialed allied health workers in the nation starting in California. We believe investing in education and skills training and retraining results in better-paying jobs for workers, better service for patients and better workers for employers to hire. Kaiser Permanente and Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) partnered to establish Futuro Health in January 2020 with a $130 million commitment.

About Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW): SEIU-UHW is a healthcare justice union of more than 97,000 healthcare workers, patients and healthcare consumers united to ensure affordable, accessible, high-quality care for all Californians, provided by valued and respected healthcare workers.


STEP 2021 Info

Please see the College Courses page.