Transylvania, ARH partnership provides incentives for students from Eastern Kentucky, West Virginia

The program is open to both prospective and current Transylvania students from counties in Eastern Kentucky and West Virginia in the ARH service area

PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WTVQ/Press Release) — Students from Appalachia interested in health care fields can now study at Transylvania University and return to their home region to work for Appalachian Regional Healthcare thanks to a new partnership.

The program is open to both prospective and current Transylvania students from counties in Eastern Kentucky and West Virginia in the ARH service area interested in working in health care, including as a health care practitioner or administrator. Students can study pre-health, pre-medical, pre-pharmacy, physical therapy, computer science, accounting, business management or social services.

The agreement was announced in a press conference Tuesday morning in Prestonsburg.

“ARH is proud to invest in our future medical professionals by partnering with an educational institution the caliber of Transylvania University,” ARH President and CEO Hollie Phillips said. “We are excited that through this partnership we will be able to offer students from our service areas who are pursuing health care degrees at Transy the opportunity to return home to the areas they are from to make a difference in patients’ lives while enjoying a career with ARH.”

President Brien Lewis said, “Transylvania and ARH share a mission to serve the state of Kentucky and the people who live, learn and work here. Transy has a long tradition of educating and preparing people for successful and meaningful careers in health care — approximately 90% of the students we recommend to health profession schools are accepted, compared with a national acceptance rate of about 50%. This partnership is really just an extension of that.”

The first cohort of students will be notified in February 2022. Recipients must agree to return to Appalachia following graduation from Transylvania, or following the completion of graduate or professional degrees, and work for ARH for a minimum of three years.

Students selected for the scholarship program may receive up to $15,000 over four years — in addition to other merit and need-based aid — and will have access to experiential learning opportunities during their undergraduate studies in the form of summer work, mentorships and internships with ARH.

Applications for the program will be available in the coming weeks at transy.edu/ARH.

“We want students from our region who are interested in a career in the medical field to know that they have the opportunity to pursue their own path in Kentucky for college, then return to home to work,” Lewis said. “Transy is proud to partner with ARH, the largest provider of care and single largest employer in southeastern Kentucky. Their commitment to excellence made this partnership a perfect fit.”

ARH is a not-for-profit health system operating 13 hospitals in Barbourville, Hazard, Harlan, Hyden, Martin, McDowell, Middlesboro, Prestonsburg, West Liberty, Whitesburg and South Williamson in Kentucky and Beckley and Hinton in West Virginia, as well as multispecialty physician practices, home health agencies, home medical equipment stores and retail pharmacies.

ARH employs more than 6,000 people with an annual payroll and benefits of $330 million generated into our local economies. ARH also has a network of more than 600 active and courtesy medical staff members. ARH is the largest provider of care and single largest employer in southeastern Kentucky and the third largest private employer in southern West Virginia.

Transylvania University, located in the heart of downtown Lexington, Kentucky, is a top-ranked private liberal arts college featuring a community-driven, personalized approach to a liberal arts education through 46 majors. Founded in 1780, it is Kentucky’s first college and the 16th oldest institution of higher learning in the country, with approximately 1,000 students.

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