Phoebe invests $750k in new education partnership with Albany State

Phoebe invests $750k in new education partnership with Albany State

ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - On Wednesday, Phoebe and Albany State University (ASU) officials announced they are launching a new partnership created to encourage interest in healthcare careers among high school students across the region and significantly expand ASU’s nursing and emergency medical technician (EMT) programs to accommodate more students.

This initiative is the latest in a series of investments Phoebe has made with regional educational partner institutions to address the critical nursing need, according to a press release.

ASU and Phoebe announce a new education initiative.
ASU and Phoebe announce a new education initiative. (Source: Phoebe Health System)

“Healthcare organizations across the country are facing a critical workforce shortage, particularly in nursing,” said Scott Steiner, Phoebe’s president and CEO. “With national demand at peak levels, it’s difficult for any hospital to attract medical professionals like nurses and EMTs. Therefore, we are partnering with ASU to help grow fresh talent right here in southwest Georgia.”

The partnership will target teenage students across the region, delivering education and the opportunity to inspire students to consider careers in healthcare.

“Our goal is to reach out and show these bright minds how rewarding life as a caregiver can be, right here in southwest Georgia. We want to keep them here for college, prepare them for an in-demand role in healthcare, and give them every reason to stay and start their career in the communities they already know and love,” said Steiner.

Phoebe said they are also investing in ASU’s Pre-College STEM Program and the Health Sciences and STEM Academy to support 90 students per year for three years.

Marion Ross Fedrick, ASU president, left, and Scott Steiner, Phoebe Putney Health System president and CEO, right.
Marion Ross Fedrick, ASU president, left, and Scott Steiner, Phoebe Putney Health System president and CEO, right. (Source: Phoebe Health System)

“There are so many incredible, intelligent and motivated young people across our region who need a chance and a path to success. Our Pre-College STEM Program and Academy can provide that spark, excitement, and nurturing to help students embrace the idea of a healthcare career,” said Marion Ross Fedrick, ASU president.

As part of the partnership, Phoebe will also provide funds to help pay for new nursing faculty members and stipends for ASU nursing students and tutors. The release said Phoebe will also ensure ASU nursing students have access to clinical rotations in Phoebe facilities and hands-on training in the Phoebe Simulation and Innovation Center.

“Albany State’s continued partnership with Phoebe and our commitment to academic excellence and student success is integral to why ASU continues to be a premier health professions institution in the southwest region. Hands-on training and outstanding classroom instruction are critical to success in a health professions career. This partnership will ensure our students receive a strong combination of both and are well-equipped for success when they enter the workforce,” said Dr. Angela Peters, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

ASU said they are also committing additional funding for the new nursing faculty positions, boosting student recruitment efforts and working with Phoebe to identify potential program improvements aimed at helping more students complete their education and successfully enter the workforce.

“Albany State has a long history of graduating talented nurses who provide quality care. Phoebe’s investment will assist in providing resources to accept an additional 60 students per year to our associate degree nursing program,” Fedrick said.

The release also said ASU will also designate priority admission status for students who live within 50 miles of its campus, and Phoebe will provide loan forgiveness guidance, sign-on bonuses, and other incentives to new nurse graduates who accept positions at Phoebe.

The partnership also addresses the region’s need for additional EMTs, with Phoebe providing scholarships for basic EMT students at ASU. “There is a need for EMTs in our communities. This is a tremendous opportunity to fill the pipeline in southwest Georgia with our own community members,” said Dr. Sarah Brinson, dean of the Darton College of Health Professions.

Nursing students at Albany State University.
Nursing students at Albany State University. (Source: Phoebe Health System)

Combined with nursing and STEM programs, Phoebe’s total investment over the next three years will be up to $750,000.

“It is so important for Phoebe to keep strengthening relationships with all our education partners, and we are especially excited about this new agreement with Albany State. We’re embracing some truly innovative ways for us to work together, not just to benefit our two organizations, but to better serve the people of southwest Georgia,” Steiner said.

“Albany State University and Phoebe are two fundamental institutions in Southwest Georgia,” said Fedrick. “We share a common goal of improving life in Southwest Georgia, and we look forward to the success of this partnership and beyond.”

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