BPC Receives $1M for New Nursing Program

Dr. Steven F. Echols, President of Brewton-Parker College, discusses with Senator Blake Tillery the potential of the new nursing program beginning this fall.

MOUNT VERNON – Brewton-Parker College (BPC) is grateful to announce that its new Bachelor of Science in Nursing program was recently awarded a one-million-dollar grant from the Georgia Board of Health Care Workforce. Dr. Steven F. Echols, President of BPC, expressed appreciation to Senator Blake Tillery for making this grant possible. As Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Tillery worked to create a special fund for expanding the capacity for training of future nurses in Georgia. Along with other schools, Brewton-Parker College was chosen as a recipient to help with the state-wide shortages of nurses.

Echols noted, “Senator Tillery was of immense help at every stage of the process. Without his vision and dedicated efforts, BPC and other schools would not have had this very timely provision to expand the capacity for training new nurses. This grant will not only create new capacity but also provides the resources to have a very high-quality program both in faculty and in equipment.”

Senator Tillery commented, “I’m not sure the public is aware of all the steps Brewton-Parker hit to bring this idea to fruition. They also received some divine timing and selfless assistance from other drivers in our community, including some that others would view as competition. They all worked together to make this idea a reality. The nursing shortage in Georgia is real, and if we can help fill it, we will provide jobs and opportunities for our neighbors and create relevance for our region across the state. I’m really proud of the forethought of Brewton-Parker’s team to address this need for our citizens and create a program that will add to their relevance in our community for another 100 years.”

Dr. Echols affirmed Senator Tillery’s comments about community backing for BPC’s nursing program. “President Larry Calhoun and other administrative officials at Southeastern Technical College have been very gracious in their support of BPC’s new program. In fact, as BPC’s program becomes established there are a few ways that have been discussed that the two institutions can partner together. Southeastern has been recognized as a top program. As a result of its excellence in training nurses, it has a waiting list. BPC’s program will provide additional capacity to train qualified applicants to meet the need for nurses in the surrounding area. As South Georgia’s only four-year SACSCOC (The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges) accredited Christian college, BPC will be recruiting nursing students throughout Georgia and surrounding states and not just in the local region.” 

Echols further noted, “BPC is grateful to Memorial Health Meadows Hospital and other hospitals in the region who have given enthusiastic support for its nursing program. They are providing clinical education space with the expectation of BPC’s program drawing additional candidates for employment at their hospitals, many of whom will come from outside our local area.” 

BPC’s aim for its Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is to fulfill one of its core values which is servant leadership. The college believes that providing opportunities for upward economic mobility to those who receive nursing training and helping to meet the acute shortage of nurses are ways that it can give back to the community. President Echols remarked, “God has truly blessed BPC to be able to have this new program by bringing support from many sources. This large grant from the legislative appropriation is a game changer and is an affirmation that great things are ahead for BPC and for the future of our surrounding region.”

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