UK Center of Excellence in Rural Health Program Offers Community Health Tuition

From left are Dr. Fran Feltner, Director, UK Center of Excellence in Rural Health; HCTC President Dr. Jennifer Lindon; William Mace Baker, Director, Kentucky Homeplace; Tim Koogler, K Tech Director; and Amy Johnston, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan.

UnitedHealthcare (UHC) and the University of Kentucky Center of Excellence in Rural Health (UK CEHR) announced a grant to support the first-ever Students Striving Toward Better Health in Self and Community initiative, available to Perry County and Hazard Independent high school students.

Students enrolling in the program will receive tuition-free education and training for the community health worker certification. UK CERH will be the lead in the development, coordination and execution of content and programming with UHC providing expertise and support resources. The community health worker (CHW) curriculum is based on the Kentucky Homeplace training model and is built upon Kentucky Homeplace’s 25-years of community health worker experience.  Classes will be conducted onsite at Hazard Community and Technical College.

The pilot program presents a unique, first-in-class partnership that demonstrates how private business, higher education and communities are addressing rural health and opportunity in Kentucky together. The grant for $35,000 will cover costs for 23 students, include a UnitedHealthcare virtual mentor internship and a paid apprenticeship.