Benedict College Celebrates the Opening of the Veterans Workforce Development Center Office | Community Spirit
Benedict College will host a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the official opening of the Veterans Workforce Development Center (VWDC). The event will take place on Saturday, December 15, 2012 beginning at 10:30 a.m. at Benedict College Business Development Center, 2601 Read Street, Columbia, SC. Special Guest Speaker will be Lieutenant Colonel Timothy A. Warner, Military Deputy, United States Army Research Office, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.
Funded with a $2,000,000 grant from the United States Department of Defense, the VWDC is a new breakthrough training ground to help returning veterans prepare for fulfilling careers after military service. “The veterans are such an important constituency that we wanted to make sure they had a place that they could come and make their it own. Everything was planned with them in mind, from the technology to the handicap accessibility of the classroom. This center will be a beacon of hope for veterans for many years as they enhance their education and employment prospects,” explained Dr. Darlene Booth-Bell, Program Director.
The grant proposes to assist the veterans’ transition back into a highly competitive job market. VWDC’s objective is to partner with regional colleges to support educational and professional development of veterans. The training focus is exclusively in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). VWDC offers academic scholarships, paid internships, career counseling, and workforce development training. The training provides additional support, such as preparing the veterans for entrepreneurial endeavors and teaching core business skills.
Benedict College Professor Dr. Ming Yin, recipient of a part of the grant to research the development and exploration of novel 3-D nano scale structures and their physical properties, worked with veterans in the VWDC Summer Internship Research program. Some of the veteran interns will present their research findings during the ceremony. Program Coordinator, Professor Cathy Scarborough Franklin, said, “It has been exciting watching the VWDC's summer veteran interns present their summer research results, and seeing the excitement in their eyes about the possibility of a new career in a STEM field.”
The event will include a closing ceremony for all 50 veterans who enrolled and successfully completed VWDC training. Dr. Booth-Bell said, “The past year has been a great experience getting to know veterans from around the state who are a part of the program. Men and women, who have served the country and now are advancing their education, make this such a worthwhile effort. It is an experience I will never forget.”
For more information on enrolling in the Veterans Workforce Development Program, please contact Ms. Cathy Scarborough Franklin, Program Coordinator, Veterans Workforce Development Center at (803) 705-4781 or email@example.com.