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Temple College hopes to fill healthcare worker shortage with expansion

Published: Jul. 9, 2021 at 3:58 PM CDT
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TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) - Temple College is one step closer to expanding its health sciences program, thanks in part to a grant from the federal government.

On Thursday, the Economic Development Administration announced Temple College would receive a $2.4 million CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant. Along with a bond issue approved earlier this year, Temple College will use the money to renovate and expand the health science center on campus.

Dr. Christy Ponce, Temple College president, said the school applied for the grant to help address the shortage of healthcare workers in the community.

“The pandemic, definitely created a critical need for even more healthcare workers there was already a shortage and in health care workers and we need that many more,” Ponce said.

The plan is to renovate more than 30,000 square feet of the health sciences building. The grant will cover a portion of that, including offices, work rooms, conference rooms and the renovation and expansion of the dental hygiene clinic.

The college said it was already in a great position to respond to the rising need for healthcare workers, and this grant and expansion will be a long-term investment in the community.

“We will be able to grow temple college to make some transformational differences on campus with new buildings, expanded buildings will be able to help support more students,” Ponce said.

While the grant means there will be a lot of big changes on campus, the college said there will be community impacts as well.

“We’ll be able to help support more students and their future dreams and in their training and work with our local healthcare providers to make sure that we are responding with a great skilled workforce,’ Ponce said.

Next month, Ponce said, work will stasrt on the design for the buildings.

Construction could begin in about a year.

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