The band partnered with the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) to select 10 community colleges from across the country that best demonstrated support of relevant jobs skill training for community college students. The funds will help more than 1,000 students at each college gain the training they need to enter the workforce. These students will become the first cohort of Metallica Scholars.
"We are thrilled to be part of Metallica's commitment to the community college system and improving career opportunities for community college students in technical programs," said Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, president of Central Piedmont. "The group's gift will help us better support our students as they seek the education and training they need to secure employment and start family-sustaining careers."
Central Piedmont will use the grant funds to provide direct support for students enrolled in one of four healthcare career programs but need financial assistance to complete their studies and become licensed healthcare professionals. The project will focus on high-demand healthcare programs, including Dental Assisting, Medical Assisting, Ophthalmic Medical Personnel, and Pharmacy Technology. The project will target underrepresented students who would not be able to complete their program or obtain credentials without financial support. The goal of the initiative is to ensure students receive relevant jobs skills that will make them competitive in the healthcare field.
AWMH will work closely with AACC to implement and manage the program. Said Walter G. Bumphus, president and CEO of AACC, "Colleges across the country provide pathways to well-paying jobs through programs, services and training that lead to in-demand skills, certificates and degrees for students. These programs are responsive to the needs of local businesses and provide a pipeline of qualified workers to local industry. It's a win-win for our students and the local economy. For Metallica to see the benefit of these programs and invest in the communities that have supported them is a testament to the power of education and we are proud to do this work with them."
Recipient colleges of the group's $1,000,000 grant are all AACC members and based in and around stops on Metallica's 2017-2019 WorldWired Tour. To see a complete list of recipients, visit http://top40-charts.com/news.php?nid=142405.
The AWMH Foundation was established in 2017 by Metallica as a means to invest in the people and places that have supported the band. It also provides a mechanism for Metallica's fans to become engaged in philanthropy and volunteerism. The foundation is focused on supporting sustainable communities through workforce education (in addition to combatting hunger through an alliance with Feeding America), and is fully supported by the band, the AWMH board, and by fans. All expenses of the foundation are covered by the band, the board, and a few special friends, so that 100 percent of donations go to the organizations it supports. AWMH is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. See www.allwithinmyhands.org.
As many as 700 first-year, full-time, degree-seeking students at Central Piedmont Community College will receive laptop computers annually through a five-year, $875,000 grant from the Gambrell Foundation of Charlotte. Some 3,500 students will receive laptops during the grant period.
The Gambrell Foundation and Central Piedmont are partnering on this initiative to help address the technology divide that challenges lower-income students and often hinders their ability to complete their programs of study. The college and foundation believe making technology available to lower-income students will help them achieve greater academic success and ultimately greater economic mobility.
The Charlotte Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force, in its 2017 "Leading on Opportunity" report, identified "access to technology" as a key to realizing economic mobility.
First-year students with the highest level of financial need--those qualifying for the maximum amount of federal Pell grants--will be eligible to receive a laptop through the Gambrell grant.
Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer, Central Piedmont president, explained that the program will be more than simply a student recruitment tool. "We think this innovative and generous grant will lead to greater academic success among our lower-income students," Deitemeyer said. "We think this segment of our student population will achieve increased retention and degree completion rates. More students earning degrees and moving into family sustaining careers or pursuing more education will have a positive impact on the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community.
"The college will track the progress of these students during the five-year grant period to measure and evaluate the effectiveness of the program. We thank the Gambrell Foundation yet again for being our partner in this timely economic mobility initiative," Deitemeyer said.
Central Piedmont administrators also hope the program will point to a means of reducing the college's overall technology costs. Getting technology into the hands of more students could reduce the need to construct and maintain expensive on-campus computer labs.
"No student can thrive in today's wired world without the basic necessity of a laptop, a bedrock tool for success and inclusion in the digital world," said Sally Gambrell Bridgford. "We are thrilled to partner once again with Central Piedmont to support educational opportunity for Charlotte's future leaders."
The laptop initiative will go into effect with the fall 2019 semester.
About the Gambrell Foundation
The Gambrell Foundation dedicates its resources, efforts and collaborative spirit to ending inequity in our society through strategic investments in smart, effective, and innovative change initiatives that drive results. We believe that everyone deserves a seat at the table and that better solutions and ideas are developed in partnership with the communities we serve. See https://gambrellfoundation.org/history/.