Learn Essential Mentoring Skills: RSVP for HSS Hubs by Friday

Our spring Health Support Specialist (HSS) regional hubs will continue next week and will deliver on a core foundation of apprenticeship: mentoring. 

Mentoring is key to the recruitment and retention of high quality staff. As HSS often serve as lead trainers and mentors in their organizations, education on mentorship is weaved throughout the seven college courses required by the program and work processes focused on mentoring are built into the registered apprenticeship upon complete of their coursework. 

Recognizing the need to further build on this education and training, we have recruited experts on mentoring throughout the state to join us at our spring regional hubs. 

You won’t want to miss this event. Please RSVP to Laura Lutgens at 952.486.3879 or

Chris Schulz, Administrator, and Amber Jacobs, Staff Development, Thorne Crest Living Community in Albert Lea opened our Southeast Hub at Good Shepherd Lutheran Services in Rushford earlier this month with a summary of their mentoring program that markedly decreased their turnover rate. Their two Health Support Specialists are now used as primary mentors for nursing assistants.  

Julie Apold, Vice President of Quality and Performance Excellence, then lead the group in a quality improvement workshop to get ideas flowing for ICan projects. Julie discussed the important role of the HSS in quality improvement.  

The same programming will be applied to the remainder of the hubs: 

Southwest Hub

Tuesday, April 24 from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Fairway View Senior Communities, 217 Lundell Ave, Ortonville

Mentorship Presenters: Paula Viker, Administrator, and Jina Marlow, Human Resources Director, West Wind Village in Morris 

South Central Hub

Wednesday, April 25 from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Oak Hills Living Center, 1314 8th St N, New Ulm

Mentorship Presenters: Carmen Broste, Director of Nursing, and Nicole Blekestad, Human Resources Director, at Oak Hills Living Center in New Ulm 

Northwest Hub

Tuesday, May 1 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Sanford Health Windsong, 010 Anne St NW, Bemidji

Mentorship Presenters: Jennifer Juntunen, Human Resources Manager, and Karen Kuntz, Staffing Coordinator at Grand Village in Grand Rapids 

Metro Hub

Rescheduled due to weather, Details TBD

Augustana Regent of Burnsville, 14500 Regent Lane Burnsville

Mentorship Presenters: Allison Buersken, Program Director/QI Coordinator, and Jackie Barber, Assistant Director of Nursing, The Good Shepherd Community in Sauk Rapids 

Regional hubs are held in the spring and the summer as a networking and educational event for the HSS community. Anyone who is involved in HSS or is interested in HSS are welcome to attend these no cost events. To RSVP or if you have any questions, contact Laura Lutgens at 952.486.3879 or

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