FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 28, 2014
|HCC and NC Back-to-Work hold Completion Ceremony
WELDON, N.C. – Halifax Community College (HCC) and the North Carolina Back-to-Work Program held a Student Completion Ceremony and Partners Luncheon Meeting on May 27 on campus.
NC Back-to-Work Coordinator Ruby Vincent Ward congratulated the completers. "Without you, the students, this would not have been successful," she said. Ward also thanked the community and business partners who collaborated with College officials on the project.
Fifty students completed the program and 20 different instructors participated. Ward noted that approximately 15 to 20 students have already gone to work.
Students also gave testimonials about the program.
"I have met such wonderful people," said Deisha Couch, a student in automotive systems. "I couldn't ask for better instructors either." Couch plans to return to HCC to continue her education.
Michael Moody, an industrial maintenance student, agreed. "I've got to say that everything has been consistent. The program has been consistently good and so have the instructors."
"You have given me a skill," said Forrest Mills, a student in industrial maintenance. Mills also plans to continue his education at HCC. "Continue to help those in need."
Waste water plant operator student, Edward Johnson Jr. explained that he was underemployed prior to beginning the program. "This training has provided opportunities on the job for me," he said, and added that his son attended with him and has also become employed. "The classes provided a solid foundation of the business world. The instructors were very helpful and wanted us to know things about the business world that will help us be successful… Everyone here has shown a genuine concern for the students' success."
The speaker for the event was Lowe's Distribution Center Human Resources Director Robert Peak.
Peak addressed the audience, beginning with his personal history. He added in some tips for the students to use during interviews, including being clean and neat and well dressed. "Look prepared," he said. "Give a firm handshake and look at people when you talk with them." Peak encouraged the students to not only go after their "right-now goal," but also to think about their next goal.
"Others see more in you than you see in yourself," Peak continued. "Never settle for where you're at now." He added that students can go as far as they want to go in their careers.
NC Back-to-Work Completers include:
John Mills III
Waste Water Plant Operator
Ahsaki V. Allen
Edward Johnson Jr.
Earl D. Jones
Steve J. Vasaturo
Jeffrey L. Brown
Steven T. Edwards
David A. Foster
Richie Y. Artis
The NC Back-to-Work Program was made possible through a $120,000 grant from the North Carolina Community College System. The program provides students with targeted, short-term training, at no cost to those who qualify, that will lead to a variety of career-specific, nationally-recognized credentials in the areas of automotive systems, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, industrial maintenance, waste water plant operator, weatherization and welding.
NC Back-to-Work provides area employers with trained workers and Roanoke Valley citizens with much-needed skills. It also includes the Career Readiness Certification, Human Resources Development and OSHA safety training courses.
The program, which kicked off in January, focuses on assisting those who are unemployed or underemployed. Participants are nontraditional students who desire job training. HCC is working with students to provide necessary training and will help them gain employment.
The program ends June 30. College officials plan to reapply for the grant should funds be made available in the 2014-15 academic year.
Pictured is Edward Johnson Jr., left, who completed the Waste Water Plant Operator course as part of the NC Back-to-Work Program at HCC. With Johnson are, from left, HCC Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Deryl Davis Fulmer, HCC Computer Skills Specialist Ellen Grant and HCC Industrial Systems Technology Instructor James Lynch.
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