The second cohort of students enrolled in Pitt’s online Certificate of Advanced Study in Health Sciences Librarianship (HealthCAS), visited HSLS and the School of Information Sciences (iSchool) for an orientation to HealthCAS and the University. The students came from eight states, including California, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Maryland, Ohio, and Texas.
HealthCAS cohort members, faculty, and administrators came together for a 2.5 day orientation program. In the cohort model, students share professional experiences, learn from each other, and form a network of peers to turn to throughout their careers. The onsite visit gives them and the faculty the chance to connect on a more personal level. This is significant in HealthCAS as students are required to collaborate on several online group projects during the year.
The HealthCAS orientation included an overview of the program curriculum and objectives, a meeting with instructor teams and an explanation of policy and procedures at Pitt, with an emphasis on academic integrity in writing. In a visit to UPMC Shadyside, students learned about Magnet Certification and the role of the medical library in that process. A presentation by faculty from the Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine introduced students to the importance of interprofessional education.
Though the schedule was full, there was also time for fun. On a beautiful Pittsburgh day, students “quacked” on the Just Ducky Tour, had dinner at the Hard Rock Café at Station Square, and rode the Monongahela Incline to the top of Mount Washington.
HealthCAS is funded by a three-year grant to the iSchool and HSLS from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The program consists of three semesters of coursework. Each semester covers one four-credit course: (1) Libraries in Healthcare Environments, (2) Collections and Resources in Healthcare Environments, and (3) Reference Services and Instruction in Healthcare Environments. The three-credit Independent Research Project spans all three semesters. HSLS faculty librarians develop and teach the curriculum.
~ Ester Saghafi