Partnership brings virtual courses to schools in six counties in the state

students at Edisto Primary School learn from virtual course

Blackbaud and MUSC work together to pilot courses centered on behavioral health for K-12 students across South Carolina

by Celia Spell

In a recently established collaboration with MUSC and a virtual learning platform from Blackbaud called EVERFI, students in six South Carolina counties are supplementing their current curriculum with courses on behavioral health. 


EVERFI aims to “provide the missing layer of education” with its platform. There are four courses included in the pilot program that span elementary, middle, and high school. The course for elementary school students is centered on compassion, empathy and caring for others, while the middle school course is focused on mental health and wellness. The two courses for high school students focus on preventing alcohol use and the dangers of vaping. All four courses in the pilot program will be available in schools in Calhoun, Orangeburg, and Bamberg counties. Students in Charleston, Berkeley, and Dorchester counties will have access to the elementary and high school courses.  



students at Edisto Primary School learn from virtual course 
Through a partnership with MUSC and Blackbaud’s EVERfi, students from Edisto Elementary School take a virtual course on compassion and empathy. 

The courses started this past semester and will continue through the end of next year. During the 2-year pilot, MUSC and EVERFI will collaborate to measure and study the usage and outcomes of the three high-school level programs. These outcomes will be used to determine the next steps in collaboration. 


“Preventive courses like the ones MUSC is helping bring to our school district support the efforts we already have under way by reinforcing state standards for health education, reinforcing district initiatives to prevent and reduce substance abuse, and providing parent engagement opportunities to share educational information related to substance abuse,” said Holly Kut, M.Ed., instructional specialist for health and PE for the Charleston County School District.

The Understanding Mental Wellness course introduces coping strategies to students to help them develop ways to manage their own thoughts, emotions and behaviors. The Alcohol EDU course is designed to prevent teenage drinking, and it has been proven to reduce some of the negative consequences associated with underage drinking. Vaping: Know the truth was developed in collaboration with the American Heart Association, Kaiser Permanente and Truth Initiative and provides knowledge around the dangers of using e-cigarettes and even provides resources to help young people quit vaping.

Caroline Brown, chief strategy and external affairs officer, says this partnership continues the mission of MUSC and provides health-related resources some students don’t currently have access to. And Ann Collins Josey, relationship manager for MUSC’s Office of Strategy and External Affairs, is looking forward to understanding the impacts of the courses on students and exploring how the organizations can work together to support the ongoing work of the school districts.


The pilot program will continue until June 2025, and then both MUSC and EVERFI are excited to explore expansion statewide. By providing surveys before and after the courses, the program hopes to find measurable benefits and pinpoint who these courses help the most. Those results will help determine where to take the program next.