Justice presents New River CTC with $3.5 million for their programs

BEAVER, WV (WOAY)—Governor Justice presented $3.5 million to the New River Community and Technical College. $500,000 of it will expand Tourism and Hospitality programs. The other 3 million will renovate a hanger at the airport for aviation programs, especially the development of an aviation mechanic program.

“This funding for aviation maintenance is life-changing either way. For this program, it puts us over the top of the money that we were seeking. It’s very hard to find construction money,” said Bonny Copenhaver, President of New River CTC. “So the college does appreciate the governor’s investment in this. We see aviation mechanics as a way of diversifying the economy, especially southern West Virginia.”

The hope for this money is to help train people for these types of careers, especially as tourism is booming in West Virginia.

“It’s a lot of money, that’s for sure. Yeah, but it is absolutely the multiplier effect of these dollars is going to be unbelievable. Just wait and see. I mean, you know, the 3 million for the aviation stuff, but the 500,000 and everything for all the different things that we’re going to be training, teaching kids how to do things, to be able to handle all these people that are coming to this great state and everything. It’s good stuff,” said West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice. “The multiplier effect of those dollars is going to be go and go and go and go. This is only a sprinkle to absolutely what we should continue to do.”

According to West Virginia’s tourism secretary, it’s projected that around 21,000 new job openings in tourism will be available annually for the next 5 years.

New River CTC’s President explains more about the tourism programs this money will benefit.

“So there will be a program in outdoor recreation, sort of early stages of managing how you build trails, safety, all of those types of things so that someone can be a guide on a hike. We will have a hospitality and tourism management program, just like what it sounds to be able to run an efficient operation,” explained Copenhaver. “Then we’ll be going into mobile food services. So we actually do have a mobile kitchen. It’s more commonly known as a food truck. So we’ll be teaching people how to set up their own business in a food truck.”

While some of these programs will start by the fall, the aviation programs will be dependent on the construction and getting their certification from the FAA.

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