Health Career Pathways

Creating opportunities and getting Del Norte County and Tribal Lands students excited and on track early for a local health career!

The Health Career Pathways project in Del Norte and Tribal lands is a collaborative effort between educators and local health care providers to develop educational pathways, and work-based learning opportunities for youth interested in health and wellness careers. We are also providing opportunities for students to touch into the idea of a health career throughout their educational journey, so there is a pipeline of students ready to take advantage of the opportunities being built.

building out future health workforce

Our project is designed to address the shortage of health professionals in our area. There aren’t enough care providers to serve our population, and local opportunities for higher education in health professions are limited. Health professionals recruited from outside the community often don’t stay long term and local youth aren’t always aware of the array of health career options. To address this, we are working to “grow our own health workforce from within.”


Our objective is to grow our own health workforce by focusing on three primary areas: employers, education and youth. Collaboration is the project’s foundation. Here’s how it works:


We’re joining forces with educators to integrate more health-related information into the curriculum, and to to develop educational pathways at the high school level.

a layout of the path to a health career


Del Norte County and Tribal Lands health and wellness professionals are in demand and health careers are more attainable than local youth realize! Here are just a few of the careers available:

  • Nursing – licensed vocational nurse, registered nurse, nurse practitioner
  • Providers and specialties – medical doctor, physician’s assistant
  • Social work – social worker, eligibility worker
  • Public health – health educator, community health worker
  • Mental health – behavioral health specialist, marriage and family therapist
  • Pharmacy – pharmacist, pharmacy tech
  • Therapists – occupational therapists, physical therapists
  • Technicians – radiologist, lab tech
  • Dental – dentist, dental hygienist, dental assistant
  • Emergency medical – paramedic, EMT
  • Veterinary – veterinarian, vet tech
  • Allied health – chiropractor, physical therapist acupuncturist
  • Ancillary positions – medical IT, facilities manager
  • Administrative – human resources, administrative services
  • Home health – home health aide, personal care assistant

long list of careers, type of education and salary range


We’re working to support and encourage youth interested in health careers with year-round support programs such as seminars, mentoring, and job training:

  • Health Pathway Workshops
  • Summer Youth Training Academy
  • E3 Summer Employment Program
  • Work based learning opportunities with local health employers


Local healthcare providers are engaging in the work by providing three levels of support:

  • School outreach and guest speakers
  • Work-based learning opportunities
  • Workforce development policies and move-up
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