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Gov. Burgum awards Emergency Education Relief grants to colleges and universities in North Dakota

Published: Nov. 9, 2020 at 6:49 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Gov. Doug Burgum is awarding $2.5M in emergency education relief grants to colleges and universities in North Dakota.

The Governor’s Emergency Education Relief, or GEER Fund, created by the CARES Act, allows the governor to provide support to local educational agencies and institutions of higher education.

We spoke with a representative from Bismarck State College, a recipient of the grant, about what they plan to do with the funds.

BSC was awarded $420,780, that will go towards energy curriculum, diagnostic medical sonography training equipment and medical lab technician expansion. The EMT and Paramedic Technology Simulator; may be confined to the Bismarck State College walls for now.

But with the $91,300 GEER grant for Medical Lab Technician Expansion, that won’t be the case for long because they will soon purchase mobile ambulance simulators.

“We’ll set it up like a mini lab right inside of there. They can come in. They can practice their skills. They can do those labs that they would have to come to campus for previously, inside that ambulance, and we have the opportunity to expand it to different health care avenues as well,” said Mari Volk, BSC Dean of Current and Emerging Technologies.

State officials said North Dakota received approximately $5.93 million in GEER funding from the U.S. Department of Education, $2.5 million of which was made available to higher education through a competitive grant process.

Burgum said, “These grants will ensure our colleges and universities continue to have the resources and equipment they need to provide critical workforce training and education across the state.”

BSC was also awarded $160,000 to purchase two ultrasound machines for the college’s news Diagnostic Medical Sonography program.

“So we’ll need the equipment to show them how to used it, what they’re going to be working with and that’s why this came at an ideal time for us,” said Volk.

Over 40 proposals were received totaling more than $7.5 million for the competitive grants. A competitive grant process also was held for GEER funding for K-12 education.

Those applications are still being evaluated.

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