1. MCH Workforce Development
  2. Funded Projects

Funded Projects

Drexel MCH Catalyst Program: Building a Skilled and Diverse MCH Workforce

Grant Status: Active

Training Category: Maternal and Child Health Public Health Catalyst Program

Project Director(s):

Renee Turchi, MD, MPH, FAAP
Drexel University School of Public Heatth
3215 Market Street 4th Floor
Philadelphia, PA  19104
Phone: 215-427-5331


MCH populations, increasing in number and diversity, face vast disparities and poor health outcomes. Concurrently, numbers of diverse public health professionals trained in MCH are declining. It is paramount to expand MCH graduate training, especially for students of diverse backgrounds, to increase workforce capacity/diversity. Drexel SPH has a highly diverse student body with large interest in MCH, but gaps persist in training/curricular content.

Goals and Objectives:

The purpose of the Drexel MCH Program is to increase number, diversity, and capacity of future MCH professionals through formal MCH public health graduate training.

  • Goal 1: Strengthen MCH curriculum and expand MCH content/Leadership Competencies:
    • 1. Offer core MCH courses to be included in MCH minor/certificate,
    • 2. Infuse MCH content exposing all MPH students to MCH content and
    • 3. Enroll graduate students (masters/doctoral) into training program.
  • Goal 2: Enhance and support diverse MCH masters and doctoral student leadership and promote trainee engagement/cohesion:
    • 1. Foster students in MCH student-led activities,
    • 2. Select MCH student group leaders annually,
    • 3. Include students at all levels for MCH peer mentoring activities.
  • Goal 3: Offer MCH professional development/leadership training for students, faculty, and professionals:
    • 1. Collaborate with key partners to offer MCH Speaker Series sessions focused on key MCH content/competencies,
    • 2. Strengthen MCH leadership training with formal workshops/activities.
  • Goal 4: Provide practical/research/mentoring opportunities to foster MCH leadership/training skills:
    • 1. Match students with MCH interests with MCH mentors,
    • 2. Place students interested in MCH research in MCH agencies,
    • 3. SPH students indicating MCH interests will participate in MCH career networking event annually,
    • 4. Support student attendance at MCH conferences/national MCH student programs,
    • 5. Support workforce development projects promoting trainee/community partner collaboration,
    • 6. Support MCH doctoral trainee (partner with UHC),
    • 7. Annually increase students pursuing MCH careers.
  • Goal 5: Engage diverse MCH core faculty w/MCH faculty meetings (course feedback, review student/faculty MCH interests/opportunities for collaboration).
  • Goal 6: Establish program sustainability:
    • 1. Increase MCH Certificate enrollment/MCH Minor enrollment,
    • 2. Increase academic partners within Drexel,
    • 3. Apply for externally funded MCH projects.


  1. Develop/enhance courses
  2. Recruit/train/support diverse student cohort
  3. Speaker series/symposia
  4. Journal club
  5. Career events
  6. Collaboration & research/practical experiences with multidisciplinary partners
  7. Support national trainee engagement
  8. Support doctoral student research
  9. Faculty meetings
  10. Maintain MCH certificate and minor


Program at Drexel SPH & UHC, w/ College of Nursing/Health Prof., Med. School. Partners: DU Online (MCH Certificate), MCH orgs. (CAN, PCCY, MCC), local/state government (PDPH, PA DOH, Title V, Medicaid, regional HRSA office), St. Chris, Family Voices, PA AAP.


Track and report activities to assess success in meeting objectives. Descriptive statistics of participating students, faculty, professionals. Surveys to assess student/faculty interests, curricular gaps, satisfaction/experience, and MCH trainees placement post-graduation.