Piedmont Athens Regional Healthcare and Piedmont Athens Regional Foundation has donated $75,000 to the Empower College and Career Center.

The Empower College and Career Center is an educational partnership with businesses in Jackson County and the surrounding area. Empower engages students in real-world learning experiences. Through partnerships with business and industry, higher education, and the local community, students work toward goals that help them reach their college and career objectives.

The Empower Center will be home to healthcare learning opportunities for students residing in Jackson County. Students in Jackson County Schools will have the opportunity to take courses at the Empower Center at the start of the new school year.

This donation signifies Piedmont's support and desire to collaborate with students who want to enter the healthcare field, leaders state.

Piedmont Athens has also donated several thousand dollars worth of equipment, supplies, and materials to be utilized within the laboratory learning experiences.

Along with the donation, Piedmont will partner with the Empower Center to provide students unique opportunities and field experience. While completing healthcare pathways, students at the Empower Center will hear and learn directly from Piedmont staff, explore the inner workings of a hospital, participate in intensive job shadowing and clinical experiences, and become “Piedmont Ready.” Meaning, Empower students will graduate with the basic professional skills and knowledge needed to be employed in entry level positions throughout the Piedmont Healthcare System.

In return, the Empower Center will host Piedmont job fairs for graduating seniors, ensure that students graduate with relevant and stackable entry level credentials and skills, and will continually adjust learning experiences to meet the needs of the healthcare industry.

“Developing this partnership with Piedmont Athens is critical to ensuring that Empower does its part in preparing the future workers of the healthcare industry, and more specifically, the future Piedmont workforce,” said John Uesseler, CEO of the Empower College and Career Center. “These types of partnerships with business and industry will help to ensure that students experience a different type of learning at the Empower College and Career Center, making them truly college and career ready.”

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