Atrévete: Hispanic Center for Excellence for Social Work Practice at Rhode Island College will provide clinical behavioral healthcare training for Hispanic students and recruitment of Hispanic faculty at the School of Social Work. It centers on three communities in the top 10% on the CDC Social Vulnerability Index within the urban core in Providence County (24.3% Hispanic) that have the highest Hispanic populations in the state: the cities of Providence (43.3%), Pawtucket (24.3%), and Central Falls (66.4%). Goal 1 is to strengthen the national capacity to produce a quality health care workforce with racial and ethnic diversity to improve the quality and delivery of health care through collaborations and strategic partnerships. Commitments with two federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) and the two free clinics have been secured to increase the number of Hispanic COE students trained in culturally responsive evidence-based interventions to address mental health issues in the Hispanic community by 75 by 6/30/2027, develop and deliver curriculum and training modules focused on key competencies in behavioral health care of Hispanics, review and revise undergraduate and graduate curriculum to include key competencies to provide behavioral health services to Hispanic communities and offer it to all students, train students to show a statistically significant increase in awareness of the distinctive cultural patterns and disadvantaged status of Hispanics, and facilitate 90% of COE graduates to retain employment in medically underserved areas for two years post-graduation. Interprofessional education and practice programs for clinical supervisors and workshops for students that focus on collaborative practice competencies, health disparities and social determinants of health will be offered. COE students will show statistically significant increases in awareness of health disparities and social determinants of health (80%), measured competencies in
team-based care via standardized assessment (90%), and knowledge of core competencies for collaborative interprofessional practice among clinical supervisors participating in the Interprofessional Community Preceptor Institute (90%). Goal 2 is to serve as innovative, education resource centers to recruit train, and retain URM students and faculty at health professions schools. Pipelines and innovative academic pathways for Hispanic students will be created to increase the applicant pool to the undergraduate and graduate social work programs from 20% to 25%. Targeted Hispanic populations will be recruited to early enrollment programs, strategic partnerships with the other public institutions in RI, and the accelerated BSW to MSW program. Mentoring and support programs for students will be established to help 90% of them persist in the program, graduate, and pass the licensing exam. Development of a Faculty Development Mentorship Program will recruit, retain and promote five Hispanic faculty in Social Work education. Goal 3 is to improve clinical education and cultural competence for minority health issues and social determinants of health. Sub-awards to the FQHC/Free Clinics to fund half-time Hispanic clinical social workers on site to exclusively focus on the COE MSW and BSW student interns, resulting in a statistically significant increase in measured clinical competencies for Hispanic individuals in integrated health settings though standardized assessment. Goal 4 is to facilitate faculty and student research on the provision of culturally adapted evidence-based behavioral interventions to clients from Hispanic communities to improve health outcomes. Annual Fall research workshops will be held with COE students, faculty, and clinical supervisors to identify, design, develop, and implement research projects and a research conference each May will be held to disseminate findings.