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Rutland Herald: CCV awarded $2.4 million grant

September 30, 2014
In The News

Rutland Herald

The Community College of Vermont will receive $2.4 million in federal funding to promote job readiness.

The U.S. Department of Labor announced Monday it would distribute $450 million to community colleges across the country to support the schools’ efforts to work with employers to prepare students for the workforce.

At the local level, the money will be used to prepare students for work in the fields of health care, manufacturing and agriculture.

“This grant is really designed to help us work very closely with businesses to help prepare Vermonters for the jobs that are available today, tomorrow and the future,” said CCV President Joyce Judy.

Judy said education in the job fields targeted by the grant can be found at Vermont Technical College, and the money will be used to help students transition from CCV to VTC and to “make that transition as seamless as possible.”

VTC could benefit if the grant results in an increase in enrollment. In August, Dan Smith, interim president at VTC, told the Vermont State Colleges board of trustees that non-nursing enrollment was down by approximately 12 percent. 

The funding is part of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training competitive grant program, which in the past four years has distributed about $2 billion to colleges in the United States, including $11 million to Vermont.

Vermont’s congressional delegation — Sens. Patrick Leahy, a Democrat, and Bernard Sanders, an independent, and Democratic Rep. Peter Welch — applauded the grant award in a joint statement.

“In order for Vermont to stay competitive, our colleges must equip the workforce with skill sets that match the changing needs of local businesses,” they said. “This award affirms the important work that CCV is doing training Vermont workers, and it is an important investment in our economy’s future.”

Gov. Peter Shumlin also welcomed news of the grant award.

“It will help those Vermonters who are now unemployed and underemployed, or who have lost their jobs due to trade or other economic impacts, as well as those with special barriers to employment,” he said in a statement.