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New positions provide support for health sciences

Surry Community College is utilizing new positions for two healthcare career liaisons and a health sciences success advisor as part of an overall effort to expand the college’s Health Sciences Program.

Iva Gray and Whitney Collins have joined Surry Community College as healthcare career liaisons. These positions serve 10 high schools and nine middle schools in Surry and Yadkin counties and are responsible for recruitment programs by promoting healthcare careers to middle and high school students, as well as the adult community. Activities include hosting classroom presentations, organizing field trips, providing hands-on healthcare experiences through virtual reality programming and manikin simulations, and setting up shadowing experiences at Northern Regional Hospital, Hugh Chatham Health, and Mountain Valley Hospice and Palliative Care, as well as hosting various community awareness events.

Morgan Newton has joined Surry Community College as the health sciences success advisor and will work with prospective students as they transition to SCC and current college students as they matriculate through their program of study. The advisor position will keep the same cohort of students and advise them about the possible consequences of academic decisions and provide guidance to individual support services.

“Having the healthcare career liaisons and the health sciences success advisor will help get middle and high school students excited about healthcare positions and then assist these same students after they transition to Surry Community College,” said Dr. Yvonne Johnson, associate dean of health sciences at the college. “We have two great hospitals that serve Surry and Yadkin counties, and the pipeline of students that these positions will help create will feed the SCC Health Sciences Programs, which ultimately creates and supports the healthcare workforce for our hospitals. Additionally, and importantly, this keeps our local economy strong.”

Crystal Folger-Hawks, director of the Surry-Yadkin Works Program which helps place interested middle and high school students as pre-apprentices with regional healthcare providers, said “The Healthcare Career Liaisons are instrumental in getting students excited about career opportunities in the health sciences field and connecting them early to Hugh Chatham Health, Northern Regional Hospital, and Mountain Valley Hospice. The Health Science Success Advisor will work individually with all pre-health science and health science student majors and support them during their educational time at Surry Community College.

“The combined efforts between these positions will set Surry and Yadkin counties apart in the concentrated effort to get students interested and engaged in the health sciences fields. It is extremely important to our local economy that our hospitals have a well-trained staff to serve the needs of our community, and we believe our efforts will assist with that goal.”

Funding for the advisor position and one of the liaison positions comes from the Strada Education Network which selected SCC to receive a two-year $400,000 grant as part of an effort to support collaborations across the country between community colleges and employers. After the grant ends, Surry Community College, Northern Regional Hospital, Hugh Chatham Health and Mountain Valley Hospice will continue to support all three positions financially.

For additional information, Johnson at johnsony@surry.edu or 336-368-3368, or visit www.surry.edu for more information and specifics about enrollment.

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