Funding roundup

Durham Tech President J.B. Buxton spoke about the college’s new pharmaceutical manufacturing workforce training program at a press conference. The program is becoming a reality thanks to $300,000 in grants. (Photo: Durham Tech)

With $300,000 in grant funding, Durham Technical Community College will be able to offer a new pharmaceutical manufacturing workforce training program. The North Carolina college received a $240,000 Economic Adjustment Assistance grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and $60,000 in matching funding from the Durham County Board of Commissioners.

The grants will fund the purchase of equipment for aseptic processing training, which is vital in preventing contamination while manufacturing sterile products.

“Aseptic training is one part of our plan to create a pipeline to great jobs in a growing sector,” President J.B. Buxton said at a recent news conference. “We want to be the go-to institution for diverse talent for life sciences employers.”

Appalachian Region

Four community colleges will receive grants through a $46.4 million investment into Appalachia’s coal-impacted communities. The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) awarded funds through its POWER (Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization) Initiative to support 57 projects across 184 historically coal-mining counties.

In Alabama, Wallace State Community College (WSCC) will use $23,191 for its Prepping the Talent Pipeline for Economic Growth and Diversification Planning Project, which will review the current and projected state of automotive manufacturing in Appalachian.

The assessment will help WSCC develop an educational and capital plan to meet the workforce needs of the industry, particularly as demand for autonomous and electric vehicle manufacturing increases. It also will guide the development of WSCC’s automotive manufacturing-related programs for the next decade.

Another grantee is Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC), which will use $1.16 million to increase training and certification at its East Kentucky Welding Technology and AWS Training Center.

“With ARC’s support, we are leveraging our resources to create a competitive workforce in our resilient region,” said BSCTC President Sherry Zylka.

North Carolina’s Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College will use its $1.5 million ARC grant to equip a facility to train unemployed and underemployed residents in precision manufacturing. The program also will offer wrap-around services to workers, including those affected by the coronavirus pandemic and opioid crises.

The North Carolina Community College System is providing $1.8 million in matching funds for the project, which is expected to provide training for 800 jobs at a local facility of a global contractor in the aviation and aerospace sector.

In Ohio, a $445,158 grant to Belmont College will help it expand its HVAC training program. The college will partner with Belmont County Drug Court and Youth Services Systems, Inc., in Wheeling, West Virginia, to train participants and at-risk high school students.

Additionally, 20 students in the mental health studies program at Belmont will receive real-world experience by providing work support for drug court participants on a weekly basis.


A $10,000 gift from the Boeing Company supports Mesa College Promise students and opens doors for high school graduates to attend Mesa Community College.

The Mesa College Promise provides financial support to students with needs not fully covered by federal student aid or scholarships. The colleges welcomed the inaugural group of 86 Mesa College Promise scholars to their first college classes in August.

“The Mesa College Promise is more than just financial aid, it’s a promise that a college education is attainable,” said MCC Interim President Lori M. Berquam. “Each of these new Thunderbirds receives personalized academic support, workshops, tutoring, iPads to use and opportunities to intern with Mesa businesses.”

Mesa College Promise funding comes through the Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation.


Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) and Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) are teaming up with Kaiser Permanente to connect individuals facing economic injustice with low-cost and tuition-free opportunities. With the help of a $75,000 commitment from Kaiser Permanente, CCBC and BCCC have increased outreach to those who previously couldn’t afford college.

The partnership advances the ALICE (Asset Limited, Income-Constrained, Employed) initiative by working to address disparity among low-income, working families in accessing higher education.


The Stronger Workforce, Greater Community capital campaign at State Fair Community College got a boost with a $15,000 donation from Michael and Christy Otten.

The campaign is raising funds to help build the Olen Howard Workforce Innovation Center. The new building will increase the college’s capacity to deliver workforce training by 200% and increase enrollment by at least 120% in career and technical areas.

State Fair Community College Foundation received a check for $15,000 from Michael and Christy Otten. (Photo: SFCC)


HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College’s Student Success Fund for Excellence at the Gettysburg Campus will use a $10,000 gift from the Robert C. Hoffman Charitable Endowment to assist students facing food and housing insecurities and to help students with textbook costs.

“This student assistance to combat food insecurity, address housing insecurity and help students purchase textbooks will change the lives of our students and their families and contribute to a stronger Adams County community,” said Linnie S. Carter, vice president of college advancement at HACC and executive director of the HACC Foundation.

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A $151,661 grant to Northampton Community College (NCC) will fund Covid safety training for 700 employers and workers in the healthcare industry.

The grant is from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The agency recently awarded more than $6.7 million in grants to 37 nonprofit organizations for education and training programs to help workers and employers recognize infectious diseases, including coronavirus health hazards, and identify preventive measures for a safe workplace. 

El Paso Community College in Texas also received OSHA funds. It will use its $200,000 grant to provide two hours of Covid training to 850 employers and workers in the construction and general industries.


Southwest Tennessee Community College has received a $600,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Predominantly Black Institutions Program to improve educational outcomes for Black male students.

“Keeping young Black men in school and encouraging their persistence rewards not just the students themselves but our whole community. This is a wise investment in educational outcomes and in our community,” said Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee), who announced the grant.


Grayson College, North Central Texas College and Tyler Junior College (TJC) will work together to pioneer a Rural College Promise program. The partners received a $3.1 million Greater Texas Foundation grant for the project. Additional support comes from the Rural Community College Alliance, the National College Promise Campaign and Phi Theta Kappa.

The Rural College Promise program aims to increase access to affordable college pathways and opportunities for living-wage jobs in rural counties across East Texas. Only 20% of East Texas high school graduates go on to complete a higher education certificate or degree. In addition to supporting local students and communities, the colleges will work to develop a repeatable, affordable and scalable model for rural communities across Texas, and potentially, across the country.
The program will build on the success of the Texas Talent Regions, which includes the Dallas County Promise, Alamo Promise, Tarrant To and Through (T3), and the TJC Promise.

About the Author

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