Wallace State signs MOU with Bioprist to explore partnership in Jamaica

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Photo: Bioprist and Indies Pharma Group President & CEO Dr. Guna Muppuri with Wallace State President Dr. Vicki Hawsey Karolewics (seated) are joined by Wallace State Director of Nursing Education Deborah Hoover, Nursing instructor Disha Patel and Wallace State Dean of Health Sciences Lisa German for the signing of an MOU during a meeting in the Wallace State School of Nursing and Center for Science.

HANCEVILLE – Dr. Vicki Hawsey Karolewics, president of Wallace State Community College, and Dr. Guna S. Muppuri, president and CEO of Bioprist and Indies Pharma Group, recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding reflecting a willingness of both parties to explore opportunities for partnerships in education and training over the next several months.

Bioprist Knowledge Parks, an enterprise of Bioprist and Indies Pharma Group, is a three-phase development project in Jamaica for business process outsourcing, healthcare informatics and education and training for medical and health care professionals.

"Wallace State is always interested in expanding opportunities to benefit our students, and international partnerships allow us to better prepare globally competent citizens and an internationally competitive workforce," said Karolewics. "We were honored to host Dr. Muppuri and welcome the possibility to establish mutually beneficial programs."

During their visit to the campus, Muppuri and the architect for the BKP projects, Jeremy Millingen, met with administrators and toured Wallace State’s national model School of Nursing and Center for Science, which includes a state-of the-art hospital Simulation Center, as well as other healthcare programs and facilities, to get ideas for the Bioprist campus in Jamaica.

We need healthcare professionals with both longer- and shorter-term training to address the needs in Jamaica,” Muppuri said.  “And we want to make sure our institution is accredited both in the Caribbean and in the United States so that our students’ credentials will qualify them to work in either location, especially as we hope to also attract American students to study in beautiful Jamaica.”

With the backing of the Jamaican government already behind the project, he expects all three phases of Bioprist Knowledge Parks to be complete within three years.  Muppuri also recently signed an MOU with The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

“We were truly touched, inspired and enlightened by the experience of touring Wallace State College and its contribution to the state of Alabama. With the ongoing discussions at the table we look forward to working on our forthcoming partnership for Jamaica,” Muppuri said.

Wallace State has been ranked among the top 120 community colleges in the United States by the Aspen Institute, and No. 2 in the South for workforce development. The college is also a leader in higher education in the health sciences, having ranked among the top 20 in the U.S. among community colleges for the health science graduates it produces, and offering more associate degree health programs than any other college in Alabama.

Health programs offered by Wallace State include: Child Development, Clinical Laboratory Technician, Dental Assisting, Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Imaging, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Emergency Medical Services, Health Information Technology, Human Services, Licensed Practical Nursing, Massage Therapy, Medical Assistant, Medical Coding, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Patient Care Specialist, Pharmacy Technology, Physical Therapist Assistant, Polysomnography, Registered Nursing and Respiratory Therapy.

A comprehensive community college located in north central Alabama, Wallace State is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The college offers more than 100 university transfer, associate degree and certificate programs in liberal arts, STEM, health and technical fields of study. Accelerated high school dual enrollment programs—including on-campus high school academies for highly motivated academic, career technical, and fine and performing arts students—are offered through the college as well as short-term training for workforce development and a variety of continuing education opportunities.

For more information about Wallace State, visit http://www.wallacestate.edu.