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An open letter from Lucille Young-Talbot, MPA,Coordinator Somerset County MRC, spring 2004.


20 Grove Street, P.O. Box 3000
Somerville, New Jersey 08876-1262
(908) 231-7155 FAX (908) 704-8042
TDD (908) 231-7168

Lori Moog
Raritan Valley Community College
PO Box 3300
Somerville, New Jersey 08876

May 20, 2004

Dear Ms. Moog,

On behalf of the Somerset County Health Department, this letterserves as a vehicle to convey the success of a recent projectundertaken by students at RVCC.

The Somerset County Health Department received a three-year grantfrom the Office of the Surgeon General, U.S. Department of Healthand Human Services, to establish a Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) toenhance Somerset County's bioterrorism preparedness andresponse efforts during a public health emergency ordisaster.

Coincidentally, about the same time, RVCC received a grant from theCommunity College National Center for Community Engagement to fundinitiatives aimed at promoting homeland security and emergencypreparedness.

After reading about the county's grant, simultaneously andwithout knowledge of each others efforts, both a professor inMarketing and Business and a 2nd year nursing student contactedmyself as the MRC Coordinator to discuss how we could partnertogether to enhance the county's efforts.

The nursing service-learning group had been charged with the taskof researching various topics on chemical and bioterrorism threatsand developing strategies on homeland security measures forspecific populations, which fit in well with the goals of thecounty's grant.

The marketing students were charged with developing a strategicplan to market services for a non-profit organization includingdeveloping an action plan to implement a project. The timing ofthis initiative was perfectly coordinated with the start up MRCproject recruitment efforts.

As a result, students and faculty at RVCC are better informed aboutthe MRC and planning efforts in the county. In addition, thegraduating class of nurses have a new perspective on the roles theycan play as nurses in public health initiatives. The marketingstudents project resulted in a viable product to be utilized infuture recruitment efforts.

Additionally, they are now aware of these efforts and can continueto inform the communities in which they work and reside.

In closing it was a pleasure working with the students and theirfaculty overseeing these efforts. We look forward to continuedgrowth as this partnership serves as a public health model foreffective collaboration between the college community and thecounty health department.

Lucille Young-Talbot, MPA
Coordinator Somerset County MRC

Raritan Valley Community College
Last updated 7/26/06 by AKA

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