JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) — Ballad Health, community colleges, career technical education centers and five local school districts are partnering to further accelerate healthcare pathways in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.
The new “Ballad Health Academy” will provide students with an accelerated education and training in healthcare careers. The new program will incorporate in-person, virtual and in-hospital education and combine healthcare career knowledge and training for students.
Ballad Health plans to begin the program with the following schools and academic partners:
- Greeneville City Schools
- Sullivan County Schools
- Kingsport City Schools
- Bristol, Tennessee City Schools
- City of Elizabethton Schools
- Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology in Elizabethton and Morristown
- Northeast State Community College
- Walters State Community College
- East Tennessee State University
As the initiative moves beyond its initial pilot phase, Ballad Health plans to bring the program to schools across Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.
The initiative is part of a $250 million effort led by Bloomberg Philanthropies that is connecting healthcare and education systems.
An initial $15.3 million investment from Bloomberg Philanthropies will help Ballad and school systems create high-school curriculum focusing on academic programming, specialized healthcare classes, work-based learning and more.
Through the program, students can graduate as an LPN and begin full-time work immediately post-graduation, Ballad Health wrote in a release. The modeled program will be replicated in other areas of healthcare, including information technology, healthcare finance and other clinical opportunities.
The program is expected to open in fall 2025. Enrollment information for the Ballad Health Academy will be announced at a later time, Ballad Health said.