VIRGINIA’S NEW ECONOMY Historic….transformative….game-changing. People have scrambled to find the right words this year to describe Virginia’s first-in-the-nation performancebased program to match people eager to find good jobs with businesses seeking skilled workers. Virginia’s “New Economy Workforce Credential Grants” will effectively slash student costs for targeted workforce training programs by twothirds, opening a new path to the middle class for thousands, and boosting the commonwealth’s economic climate. Governor Terry McAuliffe says the grants program will “ensure that Virginia has a 21st century workforce with the skills and experience to compete in today’s global economy.”
Approved by the General Assembly in March 2016, the program already was being implemented statewide on our campuses in July, thanks to yeoman’s efforts throughout our colleges. With the new grants and increases in other financial aid for students in workforce training programs, Virginia’s Community Colleges are helping Virginia businesses meet their needs for capable workers, and empowering citizens to earn valuable industryrecognized job credentials in weeks or months instead of semesters and years without incurring a mountain of debt.
A pair of students practice their newly acquired welding skills at Blue Ridge Community College.