Funding roundup

The electric vehicle class is just one course taught at Macomb Community College's Center for Advanced Automotive Technology. (Photo: Macomb)

Macomb Community College’s Center for Advanced Automotive Technology (CAAT) in Michigan got a boost with a $1 million National Science Foundation (NSF) grant.

Cultivating increased collaboration between academia and industry, CAAT was established in 2010 supported by NSF funding and in partnership with Wayne State University. CAAT works closely with auto manufacturers and their suppliers to identify emerging education needs, building and sharing industry-reviewed and -approved curricula and learning resources.

“Advanced automotive technology, including materials lightweighting, automated and connected vehicles and vehicle electrification, is disrupting the traditional automotive sector,” Macomb President James O. Sawyer IV said in a release. “For our region to maintain its pre-eminence in the global auto industry, a highly skilled workforce with the right technical skills is a necessity.”

The college’s new vehicle development technician associate degree program is a result of the center’s work. It combines mechanical, electronic and software skills to train technicians to assist in building and testing prototype vehicles and vehicle systems.

Connecticut

Housatonic Community College received a $20,000 grant to develop policies to go smoke- and tobacco-free and to limit the use of e-cigarettes. The grant comes from the CVS Health Foundation, in partnership with the Truth Initiative and the American Cancer Society. So far, they have awarded $1.4 million in grants to 82 U.S. colleges and universities for this initiative.

Louisiana

South Louisiana Community College (SLCC) students in the commercial vehicle operation (CVO) program will benefit from a donated tank trailer from Superior Carriers.

“Having a variety of vehicles to practice your driving skills is what sets our program apart,” said Charlotte LeLeux, program lead for CVO.

Michigan

Grand Rapids Community College’s (GRCC) main building will get a much-needed update thanks to a $2 million donation from area businessman Raleigh J. Finkelstein.

The building has served as GRCC’s gateway for nearly a century and houses classes for more than 5,200 students each week. It will be transformed into a 21-century learning environment to support the next generations of students. It also will have a new name: Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall.

“Mr. Finkelstein’s gift will not only allow our iconic building to continue serving our faculty, staff and students long into its next 100 years, but it will allow us to serve them better,” said GRCC President Bill Pink. “He and his family have a long, vibrant history in Grand Rapids, and I know he has a passion for helping all students improve their lives through education so they can reach their academic and career goals.”

Renovations are expected to start in 2021 and will include reconfiguring spaces to meet program needs, providing additional classrooms and study spaces, dedicating space for student veteran services and revitalizing labs and art studios.

Pennsylvania

Butler County Community College (BC3) will use a $20,000 gift from NexTier Bank to boost its College Within the High School and College Pathways programs, and BC3’s Center for Economic Education.

More than 425 students this spring are enrolled in nearly 50 classes at 21 sites in seven counties are enrolled in the College Within the High School program.

The college’s Center for Economic Education promotes the understanding of economic concepts through education in grades K-12. It administers Stock Market Games, which introduces students to financial literacy. More than 880 students on 297 teams in 21 school districts from five counties are playing BC3’s 10-week spring Stock Market Game.

About the Author

Tabitha Whissemore
is a contributor to Community College Daily and managing editor of AACC's Community College Journal.