Grant funding provides free tuition for healthcare professionals

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo -- The Missouri Job Center and Ozarks Technical Community College (OTC) recently received national approval for new healthcare related training programs through the America's Promise Grant, formerly known as Ozarks Promise. The grant is for $3 million.

"It is great because we have a healthcare shortage with nurses," Lexi Mason, Outreach Specialist with America's Promise Grant, said.

Mason believes this grant will make a difference in the region by supplying more healthcare workers. The shortage is one reason Julie Jackson, Freshman at Missouri State University, decided to pursue a career in nursing.

"As soon as I get my degree I know I can get a job and take it anywhere," Jackson said. "Because there is a shortage."

Soon 372 people in the region, like Jackson, will be training for healthcare professions funded by the America's Promise Grant at OTC through Dec. 2020.

The program includes training for Certified Nurses Assistant, LPN to RN Bridge Program, Certified Medical Assistant, Certified Pharmacy Technician, Phlebotomy and EMT-Basic.

"The grant has been a great success so far," Ben France, with OTC, said. "OTC has been very excited to offer this great opportunity to serve our community by training our next generation of healthcare workers."

"I love helping people get jobs and getting better jobs than they previously were in," Mason said. "It is really rewarding for me to see them change their lives."

Classes for some programs begin in Jan. If you would like to apply, visit: www.ozarkspromise.com