NEOMED and Kent State Sign Shared Services Agreement
On Monday, Aug. 6, Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) and Kent State University signed a shared services agreement that will enable NEOMED to offer online degree programs in its College of Graduate Studies.
Under the agreement, Kent State will provide technology and support services, including infrastructure, instructional design, video hosting and delivery, as well as a course management system for NEOMED’s online courses and programs. NEOMED will maintain responsibility for all academic, administrative and financial services for those online programs, including courses, content, students, faculty and admissions.
For Kent State, the agreement provides an opportunity to expand the strong partnership with NEOMED to better serve prospective students. For NEOMED, it means access to Kent State’s proven technology platform to offer its new online programs effectively and efficiently. Through the shared services, both schools are advancing statewide and regional collaboration by developing new ways to realize efficiencies that keep education affordable at Ohio’s public universities.
“We’ve always been a community-based medical university, and Kent State has been an engaged partner since our inception,” notes Jay A. Gershen, D.D.S., Ph.D., president of Northeast Ohio Medical University. “Public universities provide affordable world-class education ― and when they collaborate, the additional leverage, makes it even more possible.”
Convenient access to world-class training is exactly what is needed for leadership development of practicing pharmacists, according to NEOMED. The university announced that its first completely online program will be a Health-System Pharmacy Administration (HSPA) Master of Science degree program. In the coming months, the online program will replace the university’s current HSPA program.
“Thanks to the combined efforts of President Gershen and NEOMED College of Pharmacy Dean Rick Kasmer, this partnership will help us adapt to the changing educational needs of our health systems and our students,” says Scott Knoer, Pharm.D., M.S., FASHP, chief pharmacy officer at the Cleveland Clinic. “We have been training pharmacy students together since the inception of the NEOMED Pharmacy program. I look forward to expanding our collaboration through this innovative program and building on our new connection with Kent State in creating the infrastructure to facilitate this course.
“This online Health-System Pharmacy Administration class will help us reach more students,” he continues. “We will be able to more efficiently and effectively train the next generation of pharmacy leaders not only in Northeast Ohio, but potentially across the country.”
The shared services are the first between these universities since the Northeast Ohio Regional Higher Education Compact Consortium among nine public colleges and universities was recently formed, but the agreement adds to a list of initiatives and collaborative efforts made by both universities, following affordability and efficiency in higher education recommendations from an Ohio task force in 2015.
“Ohio’s citizens deserve a public higher education system that works together, leveraging each other’s strengths to better serve our students and communities,” says Kent State President Beverly J. Warren. “This innovative online learning partnership between Kent State and NEOMED is a great example of how we can bring together complementary capabilities to offer new programs and services at a fraction of the cost.”
The two universities have collaborated since 1973, when Northeast Ohio Medical University was founded to meet Northeast Ohio’s critical need for primary care physicians. Kent State was one of the original state universities in Northeast Ohio to provide medical students in a partnership with NEOMED. (The University of Akron and Youngstown State University were the others.)