Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy

Patricia Toole

Training Coordinator
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Office Location

12 E. Chestnut Street, Augusta


(207) 626-5239


Pat has worked on behalf of Maine citizens for more than two decades. As an income maintenance specialist, she administered the Food Supplement, MaineCare, and TANF programs in the Bangor regional office for the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Based on her regional experience as a trusted mentor for new specialists, she eagerly began teaching as a staff trainer for the Standard Eligibility Policy Training (SEPT) program at its inception in 2000, modifying curriculum content and evolving policy applications. As coordinator, she continues to facilitate classroom teaching as well as mentor staff based on her consistent insightful understanding of policy for all three programs, as well as her experience of organizational history. Pat is excited that technology has been instrumental to making process change implementation more efficient. Her experience provides a sound basis for teaching ACES functionality for all three programs.

Her knowledge of adult learning theory, particularly cognitive apprenticeship and situated cognition, supports the value of formal mentoring to optimize transfer of learning in the workplace. Developing online modules for self-directed study requires an appreciation of motivation and engagement of the adult learner. Not only is solid training practice a key to individual job satisfaction and competence, but it is instrumental to departmental retention goals and sound fiscal stewardship. Pat’s training experience with DHHS assistance programs has provided an opportunity to exercise her commitment to social justice for Maine’s low income residents.

Her interests include educational psychology, adult learning theory, cognitive decline in aging women, and particular skill development and mentoring for women in nontraditional occupations.