The Women’s and Children’s Health Policy Center at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health created the MCH Leadership Skills Development Series out of a documented need for more professional development opportunities for MCH practitioners, particularly in leadership and management skills (GR Alexander, C Chadwick, M Slay, et al. Maternal and Child Health Graduate and Continuing Education Needs: A National Assessment. Maternal and Child Health Journal 2002; 6:141-149.) While leadership development programs and resources have proliferated in recent years, barriers such as loss of staff time, cost, and travel restrictions prevent many employers from implementing internal continuing education programs or making use of multi-day, off-site institutes.
An explicit goal of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s MCH Training Grant Program is to foster leadership development. As a Training Grant recipient, the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health and the Women’s and Children’s Health Policy Center are committed to promoting leadership skills in our graduate school trainees and to serving as a regional resource for leadership development among public agency employees.
The MCH Leadership Skills Development Series contains both original content and resources adapted from a variety of sources. We relied heavily on the strategic leadership workshops led by Henry Mosley and Ben Lozare at the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs and the Collaborative Leadership Learning Modules developed by the Turning Point Program. Drawing from these and other sources for key concepts and skill sets, the MCH Leadership Skills Development Series explores leadership in the context of maternal and child health programs and applies the principles of leadership to participants’ real work experiences.
Holly Grason and Marjory Ruderman headed this effort, with the help and expertise of many others in the field. An advisory group of highly experienced state and local MCH practitioners provided guidance, and a number of recognized leaders in the field participated in taped interviews that illuminate the concepts covered in each module and translate them into real world experiences.
The MCH Leadership Skills Development Series website is maintained and updated by Lauren Zerbe.