Students at Dyersburg State Community College (DSCC) could soon benefit from AT&T's recent $130,000 donation to fund scholarships to each of the 13 community colleges in Tennessee, writes the Dyersburg State Gazette.
It is reported that the DSCC are to receive up to $10,000 out of the donation fund.
A press release issued by AT&T on Tuesday announced the contribution to the Tennessee Board of Regents as a way to support students enrolled in the new accelerated pathways technical certificate and degree programs in Tennessee community colleges.
$10,000 will be given to each of the state's 13 community colleges with the aim to award scholarships encouraging students to participate in programs designed to help them succeed in the classroom and be better prepared to enter the workforce, writes the Gazette.
The announcement was made at Nashville State Community College.
"We are pleased to help Tennessee students who are acquiring the skills they need to enter the workforce," said AT&T Tennessee President Gregg Morton. "Accelerated certificate and degree programs are a great way to ensure our students are fully prepared to enter the workforce and that they can find good jobs right here in Tennessee when they graduate."
"This generous investment of $10,000 by AT&T in the students at Dyersburg State Community College will pay large dividends for the communities we serve," said DSCC President Dr. Karen Bowyer.
The programs aim to target those students considered "non-traditional" and "underdeserved".
"The scholarship recipients will help keep our communities strong by taking their places as professionals in many of the following careers –nursing, teaching, law enforcement, banking, emergency medicine, information technology and social work."
In January 2010, the Tennessee Legislature approved an aggressive set of steps to increase the completion rates of students within the institutions of higher education in the state.
"Our state's community colleges serve as crucial pathways to prosperity for students who want to enter the job market as soon as possible," said Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey. "AT&T's commitment to good corporate citizenship in education will allow Tennessee's future workforce to reach its full potential, reaping benefits for all Tennesseans."
"Success in higher education is very important for Tennessee's long-term growth and potential," said House Speaker Beth Harwell.
"AT&T's investment in programs like this exemplifies its commitment to furthering education in Tennessee."
"AT&T's commitment to education is something we need more companies throughout the state to follow," said Senate Education Committee Chairman Sen. Dolores Gresham.
"AT&T's investment in programs like these with our state's community colleges will strengthen Tennessee's future economy and workforce."
"The relationship between business and education is an important one for job creation in Tennessee," said House Education Committee Chairman Rep. Richard Montgomery.
"Statistics continue to show that the jobs of the future will require some type of secondary education, and helping our students in obtaining degrees and certificates will lead to more job growth and development for Tennessee."
The Tennessee Board of Regents' Office of Academic Affairs developed a curriculum for accelerated pathways for college completion with a goal to increase completion rates at the TBR community colleges, writes the Gazette.
There programs within the curriculum aimed at students who work or have family obligations that in the past may not have been able to enroll on a full time basis. They now can, with online programs that are flexible to their needs.
The proposed AT&T Completion Scholarship program will allow the institutions to award financial support to students enrolled in these programs and increase completion and entry into the workforce in Tennessee, writes the Gazette.