RICHMOND – The Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE) has partnered with one of the nation’s largest retailers to respond to a growing need in the local labor market.
Thanks to a generous $80,000 grant from Walmart, the VFCCE is pledging to help hundreds of Richmond-area community college students pay for their certification exams.
The students targeted for assistance through the Workforce Credential Award initiative have completed their studies in a high-demand field like manufacturing, IT, or healthcare but may not be able to afford the cost of the certification exam (average cost of $200). The lack of certification delays their entry into the workforce.
The target population for the initiative are students at J. Sargeant Reynolds and John Tyler Community Colleges who have completed an industry-recognized and approved credit workforce training program but lack the financial resources to pay for the required certification exam.
Awards will be made on a first-come, first-served basis. The grant is expected to fund certification exams for an estimated 360 students. It is projected that 90% of the students who participate in the program will pass the exam and immediately enter the workforce in the Greater Richmond area.
Dr. Sharon Morrissey, vice chancellor for academic services & research, Dr. Gary Rhodes, president, J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College, Glenn DuBois, chancellor, Peter Johnson, Walmart market manager (north Richmond), Dennis Dickson, Walmart market manager (south Richmond), Robert Davis, Walmart regional general manager, Dr. Ted Raspiller, president, John Tyler Community College.