The Community Engagement and Translational Research Speaker Series: An Innovative Model of Health Education

J Community Med Health Educ. 2013 Jul 24;3:1000227. doi: 10.4172/2161-0711.1000227.


Introduction: New models of health education are needed as research is becoming increasingly translational and as health care models are being applied to both medical and community settings. The Community Engagement and Translational Research Speaker Series is an innovative model for community health education that engages academic and community participants in shared learning.

Method: Over the previous four years, eight Speaker Series events each consisting of three, distinct educational activities have been developed and implemented. Attendees provided ratings on each series event and a subset of them completed a knowledge and process evaluation.

Results: The Speaker Series has been well attended by both academic and community representatives (N = 1,573). Evaluation data indicate that participants were highly satisfied across the three events (95%). Data also indicate that the Speaker Series met its intended goals of incorporating community feedback (91%) and increasing knowledge of community resources (98%), identifying health priorities (85%), and developing academic-community partnerships (95%).

Conclusion: The Speaker Series has been evaluated positively by both academic and community representatives. This health education model is comprehensive and could be replicated by medical schools and universities striving to enhance community health education programs and curricula.

Keywords: Bi-directional training; Community engagement; Community training; Health education; Training model.