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In a Historic Event, SCC Students Sign Apprenticeships with CRHS

CRHS President Jason Beck, Kisa McDuffie, Terrell Cokley, Karizma Washington and SCC President Chris English. (Staff Photos by Misty Cribb)

Four Southeastern Community College nursing students made history Wednesday.

Karizma Washington, Terrell Cokley, and Kisa McDuffie officially became apprentices through a new cooperative program between SCC and Columbus Regional Healthcare. Students, faculty, and supporters turned out for the first "Signing Day". College President Chris English called it a "day to remember."

College and hospital leaders said the students are part of the first federally recognized apprenticeship program in Columbus County.

SCC President Chris English.

Today is a day to remember for Columbus County," English said. "Today, we launch our new initiative, Access. It’s access to careers, its access to opportunities, and its access to your future.”

Three of the four new apprentices signed their official paperwork to become Columbus Regional Healthcare System apprentices. Washington, Cokley, and McDuffie signed their agreements, and a fourth student, Meghan Nance, will sign her agreement in the near future.

Kisa McDuffie, Terrell Cokley, and Karizma Washington with SCC and CRHS officials.

SCC Vice President Sylvia Cox.

Sylvia Cox, Southeastern Community College Vice President, told the crowd that “Because of them, we have achieved a milestone. Today marks the signing of the first registered apprenticeship in Columbus County ever.”

Columbus Regional Healthcare Systems President and CEO Jason Beck was also was on hand to congratulate the women on taking the next step in their careers. He said that one of the greatest challenges in the healthcare field is the workforce.

“In a rural community, hospitals are an economic driver in providing care as well as providing high-paying jobs.

“I’m a product of the community college system, so I can’t say enough about the foundational success of a community college and what it’s working toward,” Beck said.

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