Henry County Schools partners to launch innovative new program aimed at creating a sustainable pool of aspiring healthcare professionals
HENRY COUNTY SCHOOLS PARTNERS TO LAUNCH INNOVATIVE NEW PROGRAM AIMED AT CREATING A SUSTAINABLE POOL OF ASPIRING HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL
A partnership between Piedmont Henry Hospital, Gordon State College, and Henry County Schools
December 7, 2022 - On Wednesday, December 7, Henry County Schools Superintendent Dr. Mary Elizabeth Davis, Dr. Kirk Nooks, President of Gordon State College, and Dr. Lily Henson, CEO of Piedmont Henry Hospital, CEO signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) forming a Community Innovation Campus partnership.
This innovative venture will aid in creating a pool of future nurses to serve in Henry County by harnessing the passions of local students. The vision of the program is to develop a pathway that creates a pipeline for aspiring healthcare professionals while also increasing the number of students who enter the nursing profession following graduation. The partnership includes an opportunity for Henry County Schools students entering the ninth grade to begin a rigorous and specially designed curriculum of accelerated academic coursework with access to courses that provide hands-on, authentic learning experiences. Dual-enrollment students graduating with an associate’s degree worth of college credit and a job offer are just a few of the benefits of this exciting opportunity.
Henry County Schools Assistant Superintendent Courtney Jones stated, “It is with great excitement that we provide this opportunity for students to engage in their career of choice at an early age. We know that there are students who have a clear understanding of what they want to do following high school and we believe that students who select this option will not only thrive, but ultimately reach their career goals.”
The disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on nursing facility residents and staff has brought increased attention to long-standing workforce issues. Like so many hospitals around the country, Piedmont Henry Hospital has not been spared from experiencing staffing shortages in nearly every job family, especially in nursing. The future of nursing seems much brighter when exemplified by Locust Grove High School student & HOSA President – Skyla Gilbert, who provided attendees with a peek into her preparation for a career in the medical field. She said, “the experiences I’ve had in Henry County Schools have prepared me well for my career interests and pursuits - and I am grateful.
Former Ola High School student, Gordon State College graduate, and current nurse at Piedmont Henry Hospital, Gleanne Jayne, RN, spoke about being a nurse today. “I feel like it’s more than just having a job, it’s a ministry,” she said. “It’s also an opportunity to minister and serve people.” A professional product of all three partners, Nurse Jaynes is also Georgia’s Nurse of the Year for 2022.