Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

First Advisor

Dr. Richard Zinser

Second Advisor

Dr. Linda Danninson

Third Advisor

Dr. John T. Chapman


Background: Health care experts are predicting major shortages of caregivers as a result of aging demographics and anticipated retirements of health workers. Numerous approaches are being used to increase the supply of health care workers, but little, if any, literature demonstrates the role of secondary Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs in helping meet the anticipated demand.

Methods: Data from secondary educational health career programs were obtained from students completing five area programs (Allied Health, Health Occupations, Emergency Medical Technology, Dental Assisting, and Pharmacy Technician). Data analysis was performed on student demographics (chi-square), academic performance on standardized exams (ANOVA), and graduate follow-up survey results. Differences between programs and program characteristics were examined.

Results: Statistically significant differences were noted in Allied Health students' Michigan Education Assessment Program (MEAP) exams for English Language Arts (F= 3.923, p = 0.027), Reading (F = 4.455, p = 0.017), Science (F = 5.093, p = 0.01), and Sociology (F = 3.756, p = 0.031) in comparison to other groups. No statistically significant differences were noted for gender, ethnicity, choice of college, pursuit of career, or employment.

Conclusions: Students enrolled in the Allied Health program performed better in English Language Arts, Reading, Science, and Sociology in comparison to other groups. Large percentage differences in gender, ethnicity, choice of colleges, and career pursuit are noted in the various sample cohorts without statistical significance being demonstrated in these areas.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access