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Weekend edition May 31, 2024 | Katelyn Keenehan

Stowers Machinery Foundation donates $100,000 to Roane State

The generous contribution supports the state-of-the-art health science campus, which will open in Knoxville in the fall of 2025.

The Stowers Machinery Foundation has generously donated $100,000 to aid in the construction of Roane State Community College’s new Knox Regional Health Science Education Center. This significant contribution will support the development of a state-of-the-art facility in West Knoxville, which is set to open its doors in the fall of 2025.

The forthcoming 130,000-square-foot center will be situated directly opposite Parkwest Medical Center. It will serve as the new home for the health science programs of both Roane State and the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT) Knoxville. This strategic location aims to foster a collaborative educational environment, offering expanded opportunities for aspiring healthcare professionals.

Upon completion, the center will replace Roane State’s current Knox County Center for Health Sciences. This move will substantially increase the number and variety of health science courses and programs offered. The center is expected to educate over 8,000 students annually, featuring a versatile simulation center designed to replicate a wide range of healthcare training settings.

Current programs at Roane State that will transition to the new campus include nursing, EMS, polysomnography, and respiratory therapy. Additionally, the college plans to introduce new programs such as cardiovascular technology, healthcare administration, and public health, addressing the evolving healthcare sector needs.

“We are very excited about what this new Roane State facility will provide our community,” stated Wes Stowers, Chairman and CEO of Stowers Machinery Corporation in Knoxville. “Educating skilled healthcare professionals is a tremendous need, and we are proud to support such a worthy cause that will impact so many.”

“This gift moves us closer to our goal of ensuring all students have access to an excellent health science education. We look forward to building on this strong partnership with the Stowers family as we prepare to welcome the first students through the doors of this new campus next year,” said Scott Niermann, the Executive Director of Roane State Foundation.

The groundbreaking for the health science center took place in the summer of 2023. The total estimated cost for the project stands at $75 million, with the State of Tennessee contributing $67.5 million. Roane State seeks an additional $7.5 million in private philanthropy to meet the funding requirements.

“As our fundraising campaign continues, we welcome the support of citizens across the region who value a healthy, thriving community,” Niermann added, emphasizing the ongoing need for community involvement to achieve the project’s goals.

The Stowers Machinery Foundation’s contribution marks a significant step towards realizing a cutting-edge educational facility that will shape the future of healthcare in the region.

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