Southeast Online Partners with Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center

Southeast Online launched a partnership program this week with Poplar Bluff (Missouri) Regional Medical Center (PBRMC) to provide its employees access to quality and affordable higher education. Dr. Carlos Vargas, president of Southeast Missouri State University, met with Larry Rodgers, chief executive officer of the medical center, and Melissa Samuelson, chief nursing officer at the center, today, to launch the partnership program. The partnership offers Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center employees access to Southeast Online’s more than 20 academic programs. “Southeast is proud to be engaged in and contribute to the educational, economic and social development of the people of this region,” said Vargas. “Through the strength of this collaborative and beneficial partnership with Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center, the University can extend the tools and resources of our faculty, staff and programs to improve and meet the educational goals of the Center’s staff.” In addition to taking advantage of Southeast’s standard online tuition rate for undergraduate and graduate degrees, PBRMC employees also will receive a tuition discount and waived application fees in any online-only degree program through Southeast Online. “Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center is happy to be entering into a collaborative online education agreement with Southeast Missouri State University,” Samuelson said. “Partnering with the University allows Poplar Bluff Regional to offer our employees the opportunity to better themselves with a higher education, while continuing their work. Making higher education degrees more accessible for our employees through this partnership enables us to ensure that we are able to deliver a higher level of quality care to our patients, community and the region.” This week’s agreement marks a significant partnership between the University and the community, said Chelsea Caile, director of Southeast Online Programs at Southeast Missouri State University. “Partnerships between Southeast and organizations or businesses help to improve the quality of the University and improve the community,” she said. To support employees throughout their student career, Southeast representatives will attend medical center events and provide University online academic program information at PBRMC’s internal education sites. The partnership also allows the institutions to work together to enhance academic excellence, with PBRMC’s experts to be considered for University academic advisory boards, said Caile. “These advisory boards help ensure our curriculum is meeting current industry needs and standards to prepare our students for a successful career when they graduate,” she said. “Partnership with industry experts allows Southeast’s programs to find appropriate board members and develop comprehensive goals toward student success.” Additionally, the partnership allows Southeast to invite subject matter experts as guest lecturers or adjunct faculty members, said Caile. “This is an amazing opportunity to develop a relationship with a community leader that will benefit the medical center’s staff as they work to continue to meet their educational goals,” she said. “We look forward to working with the Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center and all its employees to provide access to higher education throughout the region.” For more information about Southeast’s partnership with the Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center, visit