Great Mines offering healthcare scholarships

Great Mines offering healthcare scholarships

It’s a match made in heaven for people who want a healthcare job – or who have a healthcare job, but they want a better one for more pay or more hours.

Great Mines Health Center is awarding Workforce Opportunities for Rural Communities (WORC) scholarships that will pay for qualified applicants — who turn in their applications before Nov. 30 and are chosen by a review board — to become an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) or a Community Health Worker (CHW). There are also scholarships to support continuing education for an LPN/RN/Paramedic who is interested in skilling up.

The grants are being administered in conjunction with Washington County Mobile Integrated Healthcare Network (WCMIHN), to benefit those who live in Iron, Madison, Perry, Reynolds, St. Francois and Washington counties.

To qualify, applicants can be:

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  • New to the workforce, such as high school seniors, those recently released from prison, or people meeting HiSET requirements (GED).
  • Dislocated worker who were fired, laid-off or who have gotten a notice of termination of lay-off, or those who were self-employed but are now unemployed.
  • Employed workers who need training to get full-time employment, advance in their careers or keep their current job.

The scholarships cover tuition, books, course materials and supplies, any required uniforms, and exam and certification expenses. Scholarship winners will also be eligible to get support services through WORC partners to help with transportation, vaccinations, food, utility help and insurance application help. The WORC Scholarship application can be found at, under the WORC tab. Winners will be announced on or before Dec. 20.

The entry-level course work supported by the WORC Scholarship program includes:

  • EMT: a one-semester course that serves as an entry point for careers in nursing, business and/or paramedicine.
  • CHW: a one-semester course that serves as an entry point for careers in nursing, business and/or paramedicine. When applicable, students can be dual-certified as an EMT/CHW.
  • LPN/RN/Paramedic: a continuing education scholarship for LPN, RN, and paramedic employees to include $10,000. Four people will be awarded in the first year of this grant, while eight people will be awarded in the second and third year of the grant.

Shelby Cox is the WORC Grant manager working with WCMIHN, and she’s also a paramedic for Washington County Ambulance District. She said the whole point of getting this grant for the six counties is to replenish the workforce in the local healthcare industry.

“I’m a paramedic by trade, one of the longtime ones around here,” she said. “And we need young blood in our fields. There’s a shortage. And the word is getting out a little, it’s going pretty well, we already have some applicants. We can extend the deadline if we have to, because we really want to fill up these slots and don’t want to miss out on using all the available grant money.”

Once scholarship winners complete their education, which includes clinical rotations and on-the-job training, those who get their certificates and licenses will be helped with job placement in healthcare professions within the six-county area of ​​Iron, Madison, Perry, Reynolds, St. Francois and Washington.

The Mobile Integrated Healthcare Network is a 501.c.3 nonprofit organization that works to expand mobile integrated healthcare through education, technical assistance and policy change. MIHN initiates primary care in the home with community paramedics serving as a go-between for the patient and care provider, to prevent inappropriate or overuse of high-cost emergency medical services or ER departments. While visiting a home, the paramedic can assess the patient for health, fall risk, COVID risk and social determinants of health, and with the help of CHWs, the can help find appropriate resources to meet the patient’s needs.

Sarah Haas is the assistant editor for the Daily Journal. She can be reached at 573-518-3617 or


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