BridgeValley Community and Technical College has been named a recipient of a Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation grant. BridgeValley’s award of $71,953 will go toward the cost of providing programming at BridgeValley’s GRID (Generate-Renovate-Innovate-Design).
With the grant money and additional funds raised by the college, BridgeValley intends to hire a GRID program coordinator who will oversee all GRID activities. Over the course of the next year, BridgeValley hopes to contract with artists and workshop leaders, develop an online entrepreneurial curriculum, develop an academic program that will fill a West Virginia employment gap, partner with and outreach to local businesses and organizations, promote the GRID’s workshops and resident artist spaces, deliver community education workshops and master artist residencies and showcase, and prepare and promote maker and master artist exhibitions.
“At BridgeValley we want to create opportunities for our local community,” said BridgeValley President Dr. Eunice Bellinger. “As the coal industry continues to contract and the greater Montgomery area has seen a profound economic decline, we want to provide educational advancement while meeting West Virginia’s employment needs.
“Through the GRID and the funding received through the grant from the Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation and our own fundraising efforts, we will partner with local groups in the area to devise ways we can continue strengthening the economy in the Kanawha Valley.”
The GRID, a makerspace which opened in October of last year, offers academic programs using face-to-face, hybrid and online modalities that support small business development, technology and creative expression and provides access to machinery and technology to support classes and workshops.