WWRC is committed to ongoing quality reviews of its services and programs to continuously address and respond to needs of people with disabilities within the Commonwealth of Virginia. National accreditation of its vocational and medical services through bodies such as COE for its workforce-driven training programs and through the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) for its Durable Medical Equipment Program and its status as a Comprehensive Outpatient Rehabilitation Facility (CORF) and eligible WIOA Training Provider visibly demonstrate WWRC's dedication and commitment to its mission. Benefits are widespread and result in quality rehabilitation outcomes for people with disabilities.
Preliminary preparations for the 2017 COE Accreditation Site Visit began in July, 2016 with the attendance of Mr. Kerry Krause, WWRC's Accreditation & Licensure Specialist, at the required COE Self-Study Workshop. Upon his return, Mr. Krause shared information learned with members of WWRC's Executive Team and with departmental colleagues; the Center's Organizational Development & Quality Assurance (OD&QA) Division assumed lead in building an electronic Sharepoint site to mirror self-study requirements and house documentation of WWRC's level of compliance with COE standards, objectives, and criteria. During this same time period, WWRC completed recruitment for a new Director to lead its Career and Workforce Development Division (CWDD), including the Vocational Training Department – this was the final phase in a major organizational restructuring initiative of the Center's workforce training programs, begun in January, 2016 with anticipated retirement of the former Division Director, effective July 1, 2016.
With the hire of Mr. James Hall as the new CWDD Director in September, 2016, in combination with the establishment of workforce education and training teams and other departmental reorganization initiatives, WWRC "hit the ground running" to formalize its Self-Study Steering Committee and launch an in-depth process and program review, using the COE Self-Study process as its structure and set of benchmarks. Departmental staff members were highly engaged and motivated throughout the process, acknowledging strengths and celebrating successes while simultaneously seeking opportunities for growth and development under new leadership.
A Self-Study Steering Committee structure, led by Mr. James Hall, administered and provided oversight to the self-study process, with subcommittees, chaired by members of the Steering Committee, assigned to analyze and evaluate level of compliance with each COE standard and related criteria. Analysis included an objective review of WWRC policies, procedures, and business process in relation to COE standards, a summary of challenges, and identification of opportunities for continuous quality improvement. Departmental staff, WWRC Executive Staff, and other key leadership representatives reviewed drafts of the compiled self-study for accuracy, thoroughness, and detail prior to final production.
WWRC has been continuously accredited by the Accrediting Commission of the Council since 1983, and values its relationship with the Council for ensuring educational integrity within its workforce training programs that dually address current and projected needs of the labor market and successfully prepare Agency consumers with disabilities for the workforce. On behalf of all the staff, we look forward to meeting the Accreditation Visiting Team in September!
Rick Sizemore, WWRC Director