Lakeland Community College in partnership with Medical Mutual of Ohio and Lake Health, have established a new scholarship program in health care fields that have critical shortages.
Medical Mutual of Ohio has established the scholarship fund through the Lake Health Foundation. The funding amount of $100,000 will help defray the cost of tuition for Lakeland Community College students enrolled in their second year of designated programs. As part of the scholarship agreement, recipients will commit to work for Lake Health after graduation. There, they will have an opportunity to follow a long-term career ladder, based on eligibility. The scholarship will be administered through Lake Health.
"The cost of education is frequently cited as the leading reason that many students drop out of school," said Greg Sanders, executive director of The Lakeland Foundation and vice president for institutional advancement. "On behalf of the students that this funding will be helping, we thank Medical Mutual for this generous gift."
Scholarship funding will be distributed for fall semester 2020, and will cover the entire amount of tuition for students in the following associate degree programs: medical laboratory technology, nursing, occupational therapy assistant, and respiratory therapy. The scholarship has also been designated to cover tuition for the medical assisting and phlebotomy certificates. Funding does not cover books, placement testing, fees for background checks/drug tests, etc.
"This is an extraordinary partnership between Lakeland, Lake Health and Medical Mutual Foundation. We've come together at a perfect time to support our students and soon-to-be essential workers," said Associate Provost for Teaching & Learning Deborah L. Hardy, Ed.D., who also serves as dean of faculty and dean of health technologies. "This partnership brings together extraordinary northeast Ohio organizations to address the urgent and increasing need for health care professionals within the immediate communities and provides the framework for employment after graduation."
Across health care, job openings are at record highs. There are over 1.2 million health care jobs open according the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics with roughly 2 million nurses needed over the next decade to keep pace with the health care demand under the current, care delivery structures. The partnership will help educate the future health care professionals of tomorrow and strengthen the economy and quality of care within Lake and the surrounding counties.
"We are at a critical juncture with a shortage in health care workers," said Mark Flash, executive director of the Lake Health Foundation. "Few other industries are racing the clock to find a future-ready workforce and today's announcement is the shot in the arm that will help close those gaps in Lake County."
For more information, contact Tracy Dennis, operations coordinator, at Tracy.Dennis@lakehealth.org.