Posted on Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Thanks to a $1.33 million grant from Altria Group, John Tyler Community College will be able to expand the capacity of two of its programs that train people for high-demand jobs – industrial electricity and mechanical maintenance.

Students train in JTCC electricity lab (JTCC photo).

This grant illustrates the importance of private business partnerships with community colleges to help address specific skills gaps. Almost 60% of Virginia companies report a lack of qualified candidates to fill current and future manufacturing job vacancies.

“The grant funding will allow Tyler to create and equip a second industrial electricity lab on its Chester Campus; upgrade the equipment in the college’s existing electrical and mechanical maintenance labs; launch a new mechanical maintenance concurrent enrollment program; and offer scholarships to high school students to participate in that program,” said Holly Walker, Public Relations Manager at John Tyler Community College.

These investments and partnerships are key as community colleges like JTCC are increasingly recognized as a solution to preparing and connecting people to these in-demand jobs. The Richmond Times Dispatch and Virginia Business covered news of the grant.

And, with more than 75% of Tyler students staying in the community after college, private philanthropic investment in JTCC has a direct return for the local economy.

The new mechanical maintenance equipment will be up and running for the spring 2019 semester, followed by the new industrial electricity lab in August 2019. The college also anticipates welcoming high school students into its new concurrent mechanical maintenance program in fall 2019.

Read JTCC’s news release about the grant here.'

Amanda Christopher

Amanda Christopher is a graduate of Hollins University and Virginia Commonwealth University. A native of the DC metro area, Amanda worked in public relations for the American Red Cross before joining the Virginia Community College System as the Workforce Communications Coordinator.

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