Maria Harris Tildon, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield values training programs that contribute to its mission of access to and expansion of health care services. That’s why, since 1994, the company has donated to Howard Community College (HCC). Most recently CareFirst named five nursing skills labs in HCC’s Health Sciences Building, and earning recognition in the President’s Circle.
“We’re focused on identifying opportunities that will expand and enhance access to affordable health care. Key to that effort is supporting programs and organizations that help train and develop the skilled workforce necessary in so many health care fields,” says Maria Harris Tildon, CareFirst’s senior vice president of public policy and community affairs.
As part of its philanthropic process, CareFirst considers an institution’s track record, program strength, and quality of leadership when contemplating contributions. The ability to ensure that the dollars they commit will be put to good use and produce benefits that are sustainable beyond the life of a grant also factor in CareFirst’s giving decisions.
“We saw the work that Howard Community College has been doing with respect to training our future health care workers and we found it to be a good fit with our mission. Scholarship support, specialized training, and employment assistance can all play a role in beefing up the region’s health care workforce in meaningful ways.” Tildon says HCC’s strong reputation and “clear and convincing ability” to deliver on education, and identify students who will benefit from scholarships, led CareFirst to provide funding to HCC.
“I truly believe that community colleges are the backbone of this country’s education system and serve a critical role in helping to provide the kind of workforce development and training that is important to our industry, public policy, and the general economic well-being of the country,” she said.