AT&T donates money for new school program

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By Jennifer Caldwell

In a time when it seems there just isn’t enough money to go around the addition of new programs may seem impossible. 

But thanks to the generosity of AT&T of Tennessee both of Campbell County’s high schools are now able to offer a progressive new course.

Last Friday Dennis Wagner, AT&T representative, Senator Ken Yager, State Representative Chad Faulkner and Mayor William Baird gathered to present a $6,000 check to Sharon Ridenour, career and technical education director.

The generous donation will be used to fund the newly added EMS/First Responder program at both Jellico and Campbell County High School, Ridenour said.

“We plan to use the money to purchase supplies needed to meet Roane State standards,” Ridenour continued.

The program, which is currently in its first semester, is a dual credit course that is being taught in conjunction with Roane State Community College. 

Ridenour said the program will provide students interested in an EMS/First Responder career the opportunity to get a head start on their college studies by earning credit while still in high school. In addition, the instruction provided in the program allows students, who meet the 18 year old age requirement, to take the first responder certification test upon completion of the course.

“We are very excited about being able to offer this unique opportunity to our students,” Ridenour said.

As the check was presented Yager and Faulkner expressed their pleasure with the partnership between Campbell County schools and Roane State.

“I am so proud that Campbell County Schools and Roane State Community College are leading the way in this important program,” Yager said.

“This program will not only help these young people prepare for an exciting career, it will also help our community to be able to fill these critical positions in our area,” Faulkner said, touting the benefits of the program.

Baird also weighed in on the need for such a program in the county.

“Our research shows EMS/First Responder is a high growth, high demand field in our area and across Tennessee. We know this program will help our students and we appreciate AT&T’s support,” Baird said.