Owensboro Health recently donated $50,000 for the BuildSmart Investment for Kentucky Competitiveness Initiative at Madisonville Community College (MCC). The generous donation was part of MCC s required match of $5 million to access the additional $15 million in agency bonds from the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) for construction of the Madisonville Regional Postsecondary Education Center on the North Campus. Successful completion of the $5 million fundraising campaign was announced in October 2015 and construction of the new facility is anticipated to begin in early spring.

Owensboro Health President and CEO Philip Patterson said, "We are proud to contribute to this exciting initiative in Madisonville. By investing in our local community colleges, we know that we are investing in a stronger workforce. Education is the corridor to the future.

MCC President Dr. Judith L. Rhoads said Owensboro Health s investment will help raise the educational level and improve the quality of life for the entire region. With the I-69 corridor a reality, said Dr. Rhoads, there is an expectation of a huge boost in economic development. As it has been said before, economic development follows the workforce.

To recognize the gift, MCC will be naming a newly renovated study lounge in honor of Owensboro Health. The spacious area on the 2nd floor of the Hatley Building on the college s Health Sciences Campus will offer students in the allied health and nursing programs a conducive area for learning and teamwork activities. Programs housed on the Health Sciences Campus include Medical Laboratory Technician, Nursing, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Physical Therapist Assistant, Radiography, Respiratory Care, Surgical First Assistant, and Surgical Technology.

Owensboro Health also will be included on the donor recognition plaque for the new Madisonville Regional Postsecondary Education Center, which will enhance the strong partnership between MCC and Murray State University to provide greater access to baccalaureate and graduate programs for our region. Much of the planned expansion by Murray State University will connect to associate degree programs at MCC to create a seamless pathway for students and employees to take advantage of higher education. The offering of 4 year degrees in our community is important to increase the level of degree attainment to match state and national benchmarks.

BuildSmart was an innovative statewide proposal approved by the 2014 legislature to permit KCTCS to issue agency bonds to construct the top capital project for each of its 16 colleges. Each college was required to fund 25 percent of the total project by December 31, 2015, for KCTCS to issue the agency bonds for the remaining 75 percent.
Owensboro Health is a nonprofit health system with a mission to heal the sick and to improve the health of the communities it serves in Kentucky and Indiana. The system includes Owensboro Health Regional Hospital, nationally recognized for design, architecture and engineering and the only hospital in the world to be designated a Signature Sanctuary by Audubon International, Owensboro Health Muhlenberg Community Hospital, the One Health medical group comprising over 170 providers in 29 locations, a certified medical fitness facility, and the Mitchell Memorial Cancer Center. Owensboro Health has been recognized for outstanding care, safety and clinical excellence by The Joint Commission, Healthgrades, U.S. News amp; World Report and Becker s Hospital Review. As the largest employer west of Louisville, Owensboro Health has 4,088 employees, and in FY 2015 saw 18,380 inpatient admissions and 823,072 outpatient encounters. A committed community partner, Owensboro Health provided grants of $702,924 in the last year to health, social service, education and arts agencies across the region. For more information, visit www.owensborohealth.org.