Denmark, S.C. – Voorhees University has received more than $860,000 in funding from U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development to upgrade its health center and purchase and install heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment throughout the campus. The funding was announced in November.
Funding totaling $770, 250, from the Emergency Rural Health Care Program, will be used to improve the Voorhees University Health Center. Upgrades will enhance the center’s food distribution, transportation and mobile health care capabilities. Voorhees has pledged $256,750 toward renovations, which will total just over $1 million when the project is completed.
“Through the Emergency Rural Health Care Program, Voorhees University will better position itself to provide adequate health care and expand the scope of its services,” wrote Saundra Glover, South Carolina State Director, USDA Rural Development, in a recent editorial. “Through the University Health Center, the university provides primary health care services to its students. However, the onset of COVID-19 has caused the unit to extend its reach to the greater community to ensure that residents of Denmark and Bamberg County have free access to COVID-19 testing and vaccinations.”
“We are grateful that USDA Rural Development has responded favorably to our proposal to improve our health center,” said Ronnie Hopkins, president of Voorhees University. “An updated health care facility will enable us to provide quality care for our students at a facility that meets their 21st century needs as well as the needs of other university community members. We see this project as the beginning of a relationship with USDA that will support the university’s efforts to reach that next level of excellence.”
The university will receive grant funding of up to $93,798 for HVAC equipment through the USDA’s Rural Housing Service. Voorhees has committed $181,202 for the purchase and installation of the equipment. This funding, coupled with the USDA grant, covers costs totaling $275,000.
“Our students deserve the opportunity to learn and live in an environment that promotes positive academic outcomes and a rewarding collegiate experience beyond the classroom,” said Hopkins. “This funding helps us to provide that environment for them.”
About Voorhees University Voorhees University, founded by Elizabeth Evelyn Wright in 1897, is a private, coeducational institution affiliated with the Episcopal Church and the United Negro College Fund. The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and graduate degrees. Its mission is to produce highly qualified graduates who coalesce intellect and faith in pursuit of life-long learning, healthy living, the betterment of society, and an abiding faith in God. U.S. News & World Report has ranked Voorhees as a #1 best value, #3 in social mobility and #33 among regional colleges in the south in 2022-2023; and #26 among Historically Black Colleges and Universities, nationally. Additional information about Voorhees University can be found at www.voorhees.edu.