MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- A monumental feat for 19 brand new graduates at UW Health.
2019 marks the class of the first, and only, medical assistant registered apprenticeship program in the state of Wisconsin.
All 19 UW Health graduates passed their board exams earlier this week, and already have jobs lined up.
The program started in December of last year and included months of classroom learning and six weeks of clinical training.
UW Health experts say the program was started because of the need for medical assistants.
“We have an incredible shortage of medical assistants throughout this state, but also throughout nation. Between Meriter, SSM Health and UW Health we're hiring almost 400 medical assistants per year, and Madison College is graduating [roughly] between 30 and 35,” says Bridgett Willey, director of Allied Health Education and Career Pathways with UW Health.
Organizers say the program was designed to promote diversity within the medical community and give some people an opportunity they may otherwise not have.