Resource workshop serves veterans

Northwest-Shoals Community College will host one of 30 resource workshops planned for Alabama’s active-duty military, veterans and their families at community colleges across the state.

The Alabama Community College System’s Military and Veterans College and Career Workshops will take place Jan. 24 through Feb. 28, with the NW-SCC workshop set for Feb. 21.

“We are so excited to host a customized event for veterans and those connected to veterans,” said Amanda Peters, NW-SCC Community Partners Liaison, who will be coordinating the workshop. “We welcome anyone to come enjoy lunch, connect with others and learn more about what Northwest-Shoals can do for them.”

The workshops will engage military active-duty, guardsmen, reservists, retirees, veterans and their dependents on the local services and programs available to them through Alabama’s community colleges – like access to veteran’s service officers, veteran’s educational benefits, apprenticeships, career services, mental health support and credentials.

The workshops have been made possible thanks to a sponsorship from the Alabama Association of Resource Conservation and Development Councils. 

“The Alabama Community College System’s proposal to host workshops to help our veterans gives RC&D councils in every region of the state the opportunity to deliver essential information regarding education and employment opportunities for those who have done so much for our country,” explained Alabama RC&D executive director Katie Conner.

Trent Randolph, director of public relations for NW-SCC, said Peters and other involved with the event have been reaching out to local groups to share details of the event, as well as talking with students who are veterans or dependents of veterans.

“This is the first time we have hosted this specialized of an event, so we really don’t know how to many to expect, but we hope we are just busting at the seams, so to speak,” Randolph said.

The NW-SCC workshop will be held in building 110 on the Shoals campus, beginning at 10 a.m. Online registration is required. Peters said it takes about two minutes to register, but it’s an important step because it will help NW-SCC know how many attendees to prepare for.

Attendees will learn about everything NW-SCC can offer, like mental health support services, apprenticeship opportunities and other forms of job assistance, like financial aid for coursework and credential training.

“We’re really trying to make sure that even if they do have roadblocks or barriers that have kept them from starting a better or new career, we hope we can help them overcome some of those barriers,” Randolph explained.

Jimmy H. Baker, chancellor of the ACCS, said the workshops are among many efforts by the ACCS to collaborate with associations that are already working successfully to strengthen communities. 

“Public community colleges were created many years ago to provide veterans with an opportunity to gain training closer to their homes,” Baker noted. “We are approaching 60 years as the Alabama Community College System, and we recognize that our greatest impact comes when we work alongside entities that are committed to serving the residents, businesses and industries of our state.

“The partnership with Alabama RC&D,” he added, “confirms that together, we can make available the colleges’ resources so that we can continue to serve those who have served our country.” 

Those with questions about the NW-SCC workshop can contact Peters at 256-331-8121 or amanda.terry@nwscc.edu. To register for the workshop, which will include lunch, complete the form at nwscc.edu/community-matters.

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