HENRY COUNTY, Va. – Patrick Henry Community College has been awarded a $5.8 million grant from The Harvest Foundation.
PHCC President Dr. Angeline Godwin said this is a milestone moment for the school.
"We believe this may be the largest single grant that Patrick Henry Community College has ever received. If it's not the largest, it's one of the largest," Godwin said.
The grant is the first of 13, totaling more than $22 million, for projects in Martinsville and Henry County.
One grant will be announced each day, starting with PHCC's grant on Tuesday.
On Wednesday, The Harvest Foundation announced that the Southern Virginia Recreation Facility Authority has been awarded a $2.4 million, three-year grant for improvements to the Smith River Sports Complex.
PHCC's grant will be used to purchase new equipment for nursing students, set up a clinical simulation lab at Sovah Health's Martinsville campus, and expand the welding program and the Industry 4.0 program, which prepares students for jobs in what Godwin calls smart factories.
"You're focusing on advanced manufacturing plus information technology, where the machines talk to the machines," Godwin said.
The Harvest Foundation's communication director, Latala Hodges, said PHCC's community partnerships are the primary reason the college got a grant.
"The partnership with Sovah Health was extremely important. We think those two entities working together is going to create extremely valuable opportunity for students and people living right here in the community," Hodges explained.
She said she is confident the grant will change lives.
"When The Harvest Foundation's board of directors and its staff review a grant, we really look at something that's going to be transformative," Hodges said.
PHCC will receive the grant money over the next three years.