Healthcare Capstone Class
My lifelong learning plan summarizes my journey in education in attempts to develop my attitude, skills, values and mind. The reason for writing my lifelong learning plan is simple: education is a lifelong journey and as long as we continue to exist, learning never ends (Institute of Medicine, 2010). My goal is to expand my knowledge and skills that will ultimately help me live a better quality life. Learning helps to facilitate the development of one’s knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes and this is necessary in an ever changing world (Sivevska & Stojanova, 2009). Writing my lifelong learning plan will help me have better control of my future in terms of what level of education I want to achieve and what to do with it.
As Albert Einstein once said, “Learning is not a product of schooling but the lifelong attempt to acquire it”. Learning does not stop at school and one must always look into expanding and growing knowledge as long as one lives (Collins, 2009). The goal is to make learning a never-ending process. This simply means that as long as one is alive, he or she should always seek knowledge and ways of developing more skills. As Einstein said, knowledge is not obtained from school only and life provides us with numerous chances to further grow our skills and capabilities.
Therefore, my plan is to integrate classroom education with other forms of learning. Whereas formal education will provide me with the qualifications needed to secure a job, personal learning will help me better solve problems, be a better citizen, and lead a more fulfilling life. My learning plan will include:
- Pursuing classroom education by pursuing Masters in Health Care Administration, pursuing a course in management and project management, doing a course in leadership, and completing a mentorship course.
- Joining and activity participating in community programs
- Joining clubs and associations.
- Travelling the word and taking family trips to see and discover the world.
- Going to work retreats to push my limits.
- Asking for and assuming more responsibilities in my work.
My timeline for accomplishing my mission plan in the next four years is as follows:
- 2018 – Complete my Masters in Health Care Administration. Start my internship in a government healthcare institution. After completion of the internship, be offered a job in a large government health care institution. Support my family and friends in the education, personal and business endeavors. Join clubs and associations in the healthcare field and a community-based association.
- 2019 – Complete a certificate course in Strategic Management. Ask for more responsibilities at work especially in areas involving management. Apply for a promotion. Undertake a personal project of building a vacation home.
- 2020 – Complete a certificate in Leadership Studies. Seek leadership positions in my circles, at work and in the community. Complete a certificate in a mentorship program. Start mentoring at least two young people every month. My mentees will be mostly young people who are passionate about health care. Apply for a leadership position at work and in the community. I also plan to remain committed to family issues.
- 2021 – Start my PhD in Community Development and Social Work. Continue with my mentorship program and other duties at work and at home. Support my spouse in her education and career endeavors.
As a manager, I will be mainly borrowing from the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) by the Project Management Institute. This book is a critical resource for any type of management in any industry as it offers basic guidelines in project management and general management. Another management book that will act as guide in my actions as a manager is the Strategic Management for Senior Leaders: A Handbook for Implementation by Wells. This book provides an important guideline on how to set missions, visions, strategic goals, as well as guiding principles for any leader. The health care book that will guide my approach in the healthcare sector is The Guiding Philosophy for the Future of Healthcare: It’s Not What You Think? (Actually It Is What You Think!) by Nancy Gordon. This book provides a different approach to the healthcare system and general wellness. This book is a good resource for health care practitioners mainly because it emphasizes on how the mind, body and soul are connected and how all of them influence the health and wellbeing of individuals.
My goals for my lifelong learning over the next 10 years are as follows:
- Advance my education to the PhD level.
- Expand my professional capabilities through education and experience.
- Mentoring young people who have started their journey in health care.
- Travel the world to advance my knowledge about the universe and connect with what the world has to offer.
In order to achieve the above goals, I will work on the following things:
- One strategy that I hope to pursue is continuing my classroom education through higher learning. According to Clemans, continuing classroom education is a critical part of lifelong learning as it involves broadening knowledge that ultimately contributes to lifelong learning (2015). Subsequently, I hope to complete my masters and pursue several diploma and certificate courses in strategic management, leadership studies, mentorship and community development and social work. Going to class and continuing my education will help in establishing academic credit as well as gaining the knowledge needed to assume more responsibilities.
- Another strategy that I will pursue is get education outside the classroom. This will be mainly through observation and interacting with family, friends and associates. To do this, I plan to join professional associations, actively participate in community groups, support my family members and attend family functions, and participate in mentorship programs. This type of education is informal and is as important as classroom education. Informal learning can equip one with skills and experiences that can never be acquired in the classroom or any other setting (Laal, 2011). Through informal learning, I am hoping to experience firsthand what people go through and how people interact. This strategy will also enhance my social skills especially when it comes to interactions and social inclusion.
- Another strategy is to develop my mind, body and soul by ensuring that no aspect of my life is left out in my lifelong learning journey. To develop my soul, I hope to grow my spirituality by going to church and having a relationship with my Creator. I also plan to have and follow an exercise regime that will work for me and help me remain physically fit to lead a more fulfilling life. I also hope to take breaks and holidays for rejuvenation and improvement of my state of mind. One cannot achieve much without the wellness of the mind, body and soul (Gordon, 2012).
- Other strategies that I will pursue will include: leading, by seeking leadership positions at work and in the community; and mentoring and teaching those who want to pursue a professional career in health care.
To achieve the above strategies, I will employ the following tactics:
- To complete my masters and enroll in certificates and other education programs for the next 10 years.
- Start a mentorship program whereby I will be guiding and mentoring young and passionate individuals who have joined the health care industry.
- Constantly interact and communicate with my family members, friends, associates, colleagues, and other people in my professional and social circles.
- Remain close to my spouse and children and support them in their endeavors. I also plan take to take more family trips with my immediate family members to help strengthen our relationship and closeness.
- Identify a mentor among my bosses or supervisors to be my teacher and the person I can refer to in my health care career. I also plan to get a mentor and get guidance on management and leadership from a senior manager at work or within my professional circles.
- Go to church more and participate in church activities, especially those involving mentoring young people.
- Start and maintain an exercise regime. I also plan to watch my weight through diet and physical activity. To develop my mind, I hope to do meditation and hopefully, yoga.
To monitor my success in achieving the expected outcomes of my learning plans, various aspects will apply. For instance, to monitor my progress in classroom education, I will consider receiving a degree, certificate or diploma as the first step to success. In addition, I hope to stick to my timeline and so starting and completing my studies in a timely manner as planned will be another indicator of success. Another thing that will demonstrate success is seeing the people I have mentored grow their career in health care. Other indicators of success will be getting a promotion, taking a leadership position at work and in professional and community associations. It will be easy to spot failure, mainly because all my goals are measurable. For instance, if I would not have completed my certificate in strategic management by 2019, I will consider it as a failure as this will delay my other learning plans. Therefore, I intend to stick to the timeline and the activities assigned for that timeline.
Various risk factors could hinder my success plans. For instance, some personal factors like lack of resources or time could interfere with success in advancing my classroom education. I am also aware that factors like lack of motivation and reluctance to change could have detrimental impacts on my lifelong learning process. It is also possible to get sick or sustain an injury and this could obviously slow down or hinder my ability to continue with learning plan. A family member could also get an illness and considering the time and resources needed to take care of a sick person, my ability to continue with my learning journey will be derailed. However, factors like technology will help me with my learning as technology could help me access learning resources especially when I am pressed for time and resources.