Have you ever received a scholarship and wondered what it could mean for your future? Callie Crump, Pulmonary Navigator at Appalachian Regional Healthcare System (ARHS), certainly has.

Investment in the future 

Several years ago, in need of clinical observation hours to be accepted into the Cardiopulmonary Program at East Tennessee State University, Crump contacted Cannon Memorial Hospital (CMH) for help. Thanks to the ARHS Career Pathways program, she was placed as a student intern in the Respiratory Therapy department at CMH. While fulfilling her observation hours, she was encouraged to apply for the respiratory therapy scholarship offered through the Volunteer Scholarship Program at CMH.

“As soon as I was officially accepted into the cardiopulmonary science program, I submitted an application for the scholarship,” said Crump. “Fortunately, my application was approved and I was awarded $5,000 ($2,500 from the Cannon Volunteers and $2,500 from the ARHS Foundation) for the two year program.”

Patients continue to benefit

To comply with the requirements of the scholarship, Crump was to maintain satisfactory grades, complete the respiratory therapy program, along with her certification exam and work full-time for a year and a half at ARHS. Today, nearly six years later, she continues to work for the healthcare system. 

Since joining ARHS as a respiratory therapist, Crump has worked in the Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Program at both CMH and Watauga Medical Center. During that time, she has partnered with the Community Outreach department on several occasions to give back (free pulmonary function screenings) to the community that gave to her. Last year, she became the Pulmonary Navigator for the healthcare system. In this position, she forms close relationships with patients while educating them about their condition and empowering them to be active participants in their own healthcare.

“While in high school, my Nana passed away from complications with Lou Gehrig's disease,” she said. “During that time, I experienced firsthand the positive impact that caring and knowledgeable respiratory therapists had on her life. From that point forward, I knew I wanted to go into a helping profession.”

Crump credits the Cannon Volunteer Scholarship Program for not only helping to cover a large portion of her tuition, making her education possible, but also providing her with an entry position in the helping profession at ARHS.

For more information about the Cannon Memorial Hospital Volunteer Scholarship program, contact Appalachian Regional Healthcare System Volunteer and Career Pathways Director Sallie J. Woodring at 828-387-1445.

Learn more about Career Pathways at ARHS.