Credentialing Excellence in Health Education


Last Minute Strategies for a Healthier Thanksgiving

Preparing the Thanksgiving meal with healthier recipe versions seems like a great idea in theory, and many of us in the health profession have done just that. But as the big day approaches, a wealth of high-fat, mega-calorie temptations will surely abound nonetheless.

Here are some simple, last-minute strategies that we can offer our clients, our families, (and ourselves!)

Water, water, water

Rise up and start the day off with an extra two glasses of water. Then, be sure to repeat this step as the meal draws closer. Those who are generously hydrated feel less hungry, and eat less as result.

Tips and Tricks: 3 Ways to Fool Yourself into Drinking More Water from Rodale Wellness

Eat lunch

It’s definitely a mistake to “save it for the feast.” Even a light tossed salad or a cup of broth-based soup will serve to curb your appetite and help to keep you from over-indulging.  If you are trying to steer family members from eating too much, make sure you sneak a healthy appetizer into the meal plan early on. They may not even realize that it’s your strategy!

Plan a group activity

A family walk outside after the meal, or even a planned indoor game such as “turkey tag” or a “scavenger hunt” will keep folks moving, boost the metabolism, and reduce the chances of after-dinner couch potatoes!

Beware of dessert

This is the one area to really be a drill sergeant about! You can have dessert, but just pick one, and reduce portion size. If you are looking out for a family member, you can slip into the role of “pie slicer” and help to control the size of the slice.  In addition, make sure to use tiny dessert plates to serve…the smaller the plate, the bigger that slice will look!

Moderate alcohol consumption

Swap flavored seltzers for wine, or plan a full glass of water between every alcoholic beverage.  Not only does alcohol contain a lot of hidden calories, it lowers your inhibitions and you end up eating much more than you realize. Drink smart! If you are serving a family member, mix a little fizzy seltzer and fruit into the beverage and offer it as a "new" drink recipe.

Have a wonderful holiday season from the staff at NCHEC - may it be healthy, happy and positive!
Posted by Jessica Wessner at Wednesday, November 22, 2017 | 0 comments
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2018 NCHEC Leadership Election Results

Congratulations to NCHEC Leadership elected to service beginning in 2018! 

Board of Commissioners: Bill Potts-Daetma; Division Board for Professional Preparation and Practice: Jennifer Taylor; Division Board for Professional Development: Sandra 'Liliana' Hernandez; Division Board for Certification of Health Education Specialists: Theresa Blanco, Kristen Hildreth, Ninfa Pena-Purcell, Cherylee Sherry, and Melody Knight.

In addition, we would like to share our appreciation for those who have completed terms of service in 2017: Nancy Clifton-Hawkins, Amy Hedman-Robertson, Gwyn Ashcom, Shana Pack, Melody Knight and Jennifer Taylor.  A sincere thank you to all for your hard work and dedication to NCHEC and its boards. Our organization’s success is a direct result of the many volunteer hours given by such outstanding individuals!

Posted by Jessica Wessner at Monday, November 13, 2017 | 0 comments
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2017 NCHEC Video Contest - Winner Announced!

Congratulations to Christen Jackson, CHES®, NCHEC's Video Contest Winner 2017!

What do the words creativity, enthusiasm, and passion for health education bring to mind?  Contest winner Christen Jackson's submission has it all.  Her winning video earned her a $100 Amazon gift card as well as print/online publication and quite a bit of appreciation from the NCHEC organization!  Entries were judged by the NCHEC Marketing Committee based on creativity, compelling messaging, and demonstration of the value of CHES® or MCHES® certification.

View Christen's winning submission on YouTube:

Honorable Mention awarded to: Anita Sego, PhD, MCHES® and her group from University of Central Arkansas.

Anita is an assistant professor of Health at the University of Central Arkansas in the Department of Health Sciences

Honorable Mention awarded to: Michael Hodges, MHS, CHES®, Bloomfield Health and Human Services

Michael is an Accreditation Coordinator who led the process to establish Bloomfield as New Jersey's first nationally accredited health department through the Public Health Accreditation Board (PHAB). 

Twelve CHES® and MCHES® submitted some excellent videos in this recent competition. NCHEC highly values each submission and sends a warm thank you to all contest participants. All entries will be receiving a special Starbucks thank-you item from NCHEC in the mail!

Posted by Jessica Wessner at Tuesday, October 24, 2017 | 2 comments
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#NHEW National Health Education Week: October 16 - 20, 2017

It's that time of year.... the third week of October brings along that fall feeling AND National Health Education Week (#NHEW)!  For more than 20 years, the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE) has celebrated NHEW, in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services, with the joint purpose of increasing national awareness on major public health issues and promoting a better understanding of the role of health education. 

As a long-time partner and supporter of SOPHE goals and initiatives, NCHEC is launching a week-long series of social media posts, blogs, and career profiles of several CHES and MCHES in support of SOPHE's #NHEW campaign.  Make sure to follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to catch the latest posts and share the news with friends and colleagues!

#NHEW Certified Health Education Specialist Profiles of the Week

Taime Spann Griffin is a Certified Health Education Specialist and a Certified STD/HIV Instructor.  As an educator, her duties include addressing:  

  • childhood obesity
  • sex education
  • recreational and health activities
  • exercise philosophy
  • kinesiology
  • human development and
  • educational psychology

Taime has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology and a Master of Science Degree in Environmental Health.  She obtained her CHES® certification in April of 2016.

Rebecca Hollenbach is a Certified Health Education Specialist and is currently an Analyst with the Center for Health Equity at the Louisville Metro Government. Her job role includes:

  • Completing annual health equity reports
  • Research methods, statistical analyses, longitudinal data analyses
  • Writing manuscript for publication of results
  • Communication plans utilizing analytics and social media strategies

Rebecca obtained her CHES® certification in April of 2016.  She achieved recognition for obtaining the highest score in her exam cohort.

Laura Colbert is a Master Certified Health Education Specialist and is currently the Director of Outreach and Partnerships with Georgians for a Healthy Future, aconsumer health care policy and avocacy organization.  Her current job role includes:

  • Coalitions and strategic partnerships
  • Public health education
  • Community health engagement efforts

Laura obtained her CHES® certification in April of 2010 and her MCHES® certification in October of 2016.  She achieved recognition for obtaining the highest score in her exam cohort.

Ronenia Jenkins is a Certified Health Education Specialist with over ten years of experience and is the Employee Wellness Program Administrator at Nova Southeastern University. 

Her job and volunteer roles include: 

  • offering wellness consultations for employers seeking to provide wellness programs for employees
  • volunteer service on three non-profit boards
  • community service wherever possible!

Ronenia Jenkins is a native from Broward County, FL and holds a BS degree in Community Health/Health Education from Florida Gulf Coast University and a MPH degree from Florida International University. Ronenia is in graduate school and seeking to obtain a second graduate degree for a Master’s of Science in Health Law.  She currently holds four certifications:

  • Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES®)
  • Certified Wellness Program Coordinator (CWPC)
  • Tobacco Treatment Specialist (TTS)
  • Certified Ergonomic Assessment Specialist (CEAS)

She promotes the importance of becoming CHES® to future Health Educators as it boosts credibility in the profession. She was awarded the “Caring Award” from Cigna Healthcare for her volunteerism throughout the years. On the weekends, you can find her reading, fishing and/or motorcycle riding.

Posted by Jessica Wessner at Friday, October 13, 2017 | 4 comments
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2017 Service & Leadership Award: Nominations Open

It's that time of year again! NCHEC is excited to announce our 2nd annual Oustanding Service & Leadership Award for professionals and organizations active in the field of health education and promotion. Read about last year's winners for ideas and inspiration!  THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION SUBMISSION IS DECEMBER 15th, 2017.

Get the 2017 Application.


MD Anderson, 2016 Organizational Winner, Service & Leadership Award

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 2016 Winner: Organizational Category

Do you: 

  • initiate programs that produce a community-wide or state/national impact?
  • promote the CHES® or MCHES® credential within your organization?
  • advance the profession of health education/promotion?

Does your organization:

  • value the certification of CHES® and MCHES® on staff?
  • implement programs or policies that promote the role of certified health education specialists?
  • use the professional knowledge of CHES® or MCHES® to implement programs benefiting the health and welfare of communities/popluations?
  • support the continuing competency/education of staff?  

NCHEC has developed the Outstanding Service and Leadership Award program to recognize CHES® and MCHES® certified individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership and commitment to the health education profession. Organizations employing CHES® and/or MCHES® certified individuals to promote and advance the profession are also eligible to apply for the award.

Individuals applying for the award must hold current active or retired CHES® or MCHES® certifications at the time of application and remain in active or retired status through March of 2017.

Organizations include, but are not limited to, state and local health departments, insurance companies, hospitals and health care providers, universities and/or schools. The person applying from the organization does not need be CHES®/MCHES®, but the organization must have CHES® and/or MCHES® on staff.

The winning applicant will receive recognition by NCHEC, a commemorative plaque displaying the distinction, as well as a feature in NCHEC’s print bulletin, press releases, and social media sites.

Dr. James F. McKenzie, 2016 Winner, Individual Category


Click here to download the Service & Leadership Award Application in pdf format.  Email completed application and supporting documenation to
Posted by Jessica Wessner at Monday, October 9, 2017 | 0 comments
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Careers in Health Education and Promotion

One of the most exciting aspects about a career in the health education and promotion field is the wide range of job settings from which a health education specialists can choose employment. Although the term "specialist" may appear to imply a niche skill, quite the opposite is true! CHES® and MCHES® are equipped to handle a wide variety of positions and possess many skillsets that allow for versality in the workplace.

Job settings for health education specialists that were identified in the 2015 Health Education Specialist Practice Analysis (HESPA) include the following: Community/non-profit, Health Care/Hospitals, Government, School Health, Academia/University, and Business/Worksite.

Companies that Hire CHES® and MCHES®

Employers in all settings across the nation are recognizing the value of CHES® and MCHES® certification - and they are hiring staff because of it! For a list of employers who prefer or require applicants to be certified, click here.  If you don't see your company here, let us know.... if they prefer certified individuals for new positions, email us and get on the list.**

**This list gathered from employers posting job opportunities online that require/prefer the CHES® credential. It is not an exhaustive list.

What are employers saying about the CHES® and MCHES® certifications?

We thought you would want to know what employers think about the importance of NCHEC certification to their organizations:

"CHES® is the gold standard that is recognized across the board."
     ~A. Jonson, Kaiser Permanente
”Montefiore Health System has required the CHES credential for its health education positions since 2006. The credential has served as a means of highlighting talented individuals with a broad understanding of the health education profession and its application within the diverse communities that we serve as an academic medical center.”
     ~Dr. Nicole Harris-Hollingsworth, Assistant Vice President, Community & Population Health
"We find that CHES® prepared educators are well-rounded and they bring a different perspective to prgram design and information delivery. In the health education space, this is an important credential that we value."

     ~Terrina Thomas, Director of Community Health and Prevention, Sentara Healthcare

Find more testimonails from employers here.

Job Search Tools

Don't forget to try out our for the latest CHES-preferred job listings.  We also recommend - don't forget to use CHES as a keyword!

Interview Techniques

Looking for ways to stand out among other candidates? Your CHES® or MCHES® certification can give you an edge over your competition, but do you know how to maximize your certification in order to snag the position?  Check out our graphic Ways to Market your CHES® Certification for inspiration and ideas.
Posted by Jessica Wessner at Thursday, October 5, 2017 | 0 comments
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