Newport News Shipbuilding

Thomas Nelson Community College would like to thank Newport News Shipbuilding for their generous donation made in September in honor of the Newport News City firefighters as well as the Newport News Shipbuilding firefighters.

The Newport News City and Newport News Shipbuilding firefighters utilized their extensive training during an incident on an aircraft carrier under construction. This event motivated Newport News Shipbuilding to invest in the firefighters of the future by contributing to Thomas Nelson. Thomas Nelson hopes to use Newport News Shipbuilding's gift in either our Fire Science Program or establish a new program that will assist in training local firefighters. The funds provided by Newport News Shipbuilding will ensure that Thomas Nelson EMT and Fire Safety students are getting the best training and equipment possible. In doing so, this allows for individual and community safety moving forward.

Newport News Shipbuilding is a long-standing partner and investor in Thomas Nelson as well as higher education in general. Last year, Newport News Shipbuilding supported Thomas Nelson's Educational Foundation in the College's 50th Anniversary through a generous gift that provided scholarships to 50 students over a two-year period.

"Like Thomas Nelson, we are committed to helping our youth reach their full potential. Like our community college partners, and others here today, we believe in the power of partnership. We are committed to providing opportunity," said Xavier Beale, vice president of trades at Newport News Shipbuilding, during Thomas Nelson's Annual Scholarship and Donor Luncheon. "These scholarships open doors for talented students to realize their potential and these 50 for 50th scholarships provide Newport News Shipbuilding an opportunity to give back to the community in a meaningful way."

The Thomas Nelson Community College Educational Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation founded to generate support for Thomas Nelson Community College by raising funds, increasing visibility, and strengthening partnerships between the College and state and local communities. In 2018-19, the Foundation awarded its highest amount in recent history with private scholarships totaling $196,830 to 313 Thomas Nelson students enrolled in academic and workforce training programs. Of those students, 124 were supported by contributions from Newport News Shipbuilding.

It is important for Thomas Nelson to have the backing of Newport News Shipbuilding, the region's largest private employer, to fill workforce demands on the Peninsula. The Thomas Nelson Educational Foundation is so grateful for all that Newport News Shipbuilding does for the College.

Dominion Energy

Thomas Nelson Community College once again partnered with Dominion Energy in the 2018-2019 academic school year. Their generosity has provided support to the Grove community in James City County, an area with a large underserved population.

The funding has provided an abundance of community benefits to the area, including an annual dental clinic, community health fairs, STEM summer camps and Thomas Nelson scholarships for over a two-year period.

With this grant, the Foundation will also have an opportunity to provide scholarships to students from the Grove community interested in associate degrees, industry credentials or career certificate programs. This contribution will provide members of the Grove community with an opportunity for success they may not have otherwise known without Dominion Energy's beneficence.

Dominion Energy has continuously supported Thomas Nelson and our endeavors to give back to the community. In 2017, Dominion Energy contributed to a new research vessel in the Geology department known as the "investiGATOR." The boat, along with related scientific, navigation and safety equipment, has enhanced hands-on learning and student-led research ventures.

"The RV Investigator has had an overwhelmingly positive impact on hundreds of Thomas Nelson students and in some ways beyond what we anticipated," stated Pete Berquist, Assistant Professor of Geology and Geology Department Chair at Thomas Nelson. "The initial draw for a research vessel was to support our Oceanography program and broaden the learning and research opportunities available for our students. To that end, students every semester have planned research trips, collected data, and presented on their findings for a wide range of marine environments within the Chesapeake Bay. These learning opportunities have helped make the course content more tangible and facilitated students making connections between the science they learn and relevant topics within our communities. In particular, students have acquired technical skills and a more intimate understanding of the connections between our community's economic, social, and environmental interests."

This partnership, and Dominion Energy's generosity would not be possible without the support of Community Affairs Manager Melanie Rapp Beale, who served as President of Thomas Nelson's Educational Foundation in 2011 and 2016 as well as a member of the Grove Christian Outreach Center Board of Directors.

"Dominion Energy is always proud to partner with Thomas Nelson in offering high quality educational opportunities to the localities we serve. Through our partnership, Dominion Energy looks forward to helping each individual who takes advantage of the various opportunities available to them," stated Rapp Beale.

Thank you to Dominion Energy for impacting so many lives within the Thomas Nelson Community College family and beyond.