The Board of Education of Topeka Public Schools today approved the sale of 10.3 acres of the Kanza Education and Science Park to Stormont-Vail HealthCare. The agreement calls for Stormont-Vail to partner with Topeka Public Schools to establish a health care career pathway for students in the school district.
Under the career pathway programs, elementary students would focus on an awareness of health careers. Middle school students would explore careers in the health care field as well as having the opportunity to volunteer in a hospital. At the high school level, students would focus on academic and health related skills that would prepare them for a job in the health care industry.
Stormont-Vail will also provide up to $7,500 per semester or $75,000 over the course of the program for students who graduate from Topeka Public Schools and who meet entry criteria and are accepted to the junior and senior year at the Baker University School of Nursing. The funds will be made available for the sole purpose of paying tuition at Baker School of Nursing. The scholarship program will begin in the fall 2012 semester.
This represents yet another community partnership that Topeka Public Schools is forging on behalf of our students. It is far more than the sale of property. The collaboration in strengthening our health science curriculum, the guaranteed internships, the guaranteed scholarships for TPS students pursuing careers in the health field are the positive dividends of our partnership with Stormont-Vail HealthCare. This is just the latest example of this district’s philosophy of forming partnerships in our community to benefit our students.
Patrick Woods, President Board of Education of Topeka Public Schools
We are thrilled with our partnership with Stormont Vail to create a career pathway for health in Topeka Public Schools. This will prepare our students for jobs in the medical field including doctors, nurses, medical records, radiology and other careers that will be needed in the future. There will be opportunities for students to earn certificates in high school that will enhance their opportunity to earn in the future! We also are thrilled with the scholarship opportunities that will be provided to students of Topeka Public Schools to continue their education at the Baker School of Nursing!
Dr. Julie Ford, Topeka Public Schools Superintendent
We are very excited to have the opportunity to have access to property that will allow for future expansion to meet the growing needs of our community. This property is an especially good fit because of its close proximity to our main health center campus where our roots began more than 127 years ago. Everything we do at Stormont-Vail and Cotton-O'Neil centers around providing the highest quality care and the best patient experience.
This purchase also aligns Stormont-Vail with the efforts of Topeka 501 and Go Topeka's to promote this Health, Research and Technology Park.
Maynard Oliverius, Stormont-Vail HealthCare President & CEO
As we continue to recruit new doctors and health care professionals to meet the needs of our community, space is always a concern. This is a great location - close to the hospital - with easy access and good parking for our patients. This property will provide new options as we plan for our future growth so that we are prepared to care for the patients of northeast Kansas and their children and grandchildren.
Dr. Kent Palmberg, Stormont-Vail HealthCare Senior Vice President & Chief Medical Officer
It is certainly more than a real estate transaction. What I look at is how it benefits our students. This is an agreement that provides a partnership between Topeka Public Schools and one of the leading health care providers in Kansas. It helps us start down the road to making sure our students are both post secondary and career ready.
Larry Robbins, Deputy Superintendent of Operations
Stormont Vail will purchase the land for $675,000. The sale comes two weeks after Topeka Public Schools sold three acres of land to Valeo Behavorial Health Care and formed a partnership that will have Valeo employees volunteering and helping students in Topeka Public Schools.