SPC receives a $125,000 grant to provide scholarships for South St. Petersburg residents

SPC receives a $125,000 grant to provide scholarships for South St. Petersburg residents

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SPC receives a $125,000 grant to provide scholarships for South St. Petersburg residents

photo caption (left to right) SPC Board Trustee Katherine Cole, SPC Board Chair Thomas Kidwell, SPC Board Trustee Deveron Gibbons, SPC Board Trustee Nathan Stonecipher, Speer Foundation Brett Vickers, SPC Foundation Executive Director Jesse Turtle, Speer Foundation Lisa Vickers, SPC Foundation Board Chair Steven Shepard, SPC President Dr. Tonjua Williams and SPC VP for Workforce Development and Corporate Partnerships Dr. Jackie Skryd

Today, St. Petersburg College announced a new scholarship to support residents in South St. Petersburg who want to take the first step on a new career pathway in viable workforce industries. The Speer Foundation has awarded the college a $125,000 grant to fund the First Step Scholarship. The foundation’s investment will help SPC increase economic mobility in the Tampa Bay region and address the needs of employers in key industries.

“The Speer Foundation’s investment within SPC’s Workforce, Community, & Corporate Partnerships will change the lives of so many students by preparing them for high wage jobs,” SPC President Dr. Tonjua Williams said. “Thank you for your generosity in providing South St. Petersburg residents with the skills and certifications that today’s fast-paced workplace demands.”

“Speer Foundation is delighted to partner with St. Petersburg College in helping to launch the First Step Scholarship program,” said Cabot Pyle, executive director. “Education was very important to Roy Speer and providing access to a quality education is an important priority of Speer Foundation’s mission. St. Petersburg College has given this program a great deal of thought and we look forward to seeing how it benefits their students, giving them a boost as they pursue their career dreams and aspirations.”

Recipients will receive a scholarship for full tuition, books, and materials related to the selected training of their choice in the following areas:

• Specialized manufacturing
• Financial services
• Data analytics
• Creative arts and design

By focusing on related training in these areas, SPC Dean of Workforce Belinthia Berry believes residents are more likely to be able to move into employment shortly after completing their training.

“This scholarship is important as it provides an opportunity for residents in the South St. Petersburg area to change the trajectory of their lives by offering certificate-based training which leads to a career and higher wages,” Berry said.

To apply for the scholarship, visit stpe.co/firststepscholarship. For more information, contact SPC Director of Workforce Education Eric McClendon at 727-341-3508 or email mcclendon.eric@spcollege.edu.

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