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VGCC Shares Grant From Glaxo Wellcome

Training students for high-tech jobs got a boost at Vance-Granville Community College Nov. 9 when the pharmaceutical firm Glaxo Wellcome pledged $50,000 to the college.

Robert E. Ingram, Glaxo’s chairman, chief executive officer and president, announced at groundbreaking ceremonies for a new powder inhaler facility in Zebulon that the company is giving $200,000 to four community colleges that are close to the plant. In addition to VGCC, $50,000 pledges were made to Johnston Community College, Nash Community College and Wake Technical Community College. Each school is scheduled to receive $10,000 a year for five years.

Margaret Dardess, Glaxo’s vice president for corporate affairs, told VGCC President Ben F. Currin in a letter announcing the grant that she recently participated in a program at Bunn Middle School in Franklin County. After discussing civic involvement with an 8th grade class, she said a student asked what the qualifications are to get a job at Glaxo Wellcome.

“I was struck by his obvious attention to his future and equally concerned that he may not be fully prepared for available positions in the high tech environment that exists in many corporations,” Dardess said. “The intent of this partnership (with the community colleges) is to provide training and education for the young people in our community for them to be better prepared for job opportunities in a high tech environment.”

Dr. Currin thanked Glaxo Wellcome for its generous grant and said: “More and more, our programs at Vance-Granville Community College demand highly technical training. This training requires sophisticated equipment and well-trained instructors, and the Glaxo Wellcome grant will help us obtain these.”

Plans are for representatives from the four community colleges to meet with Glaxo Wellcome officials and principals from area high schools to work out a plan of action to help achieve the company’s goals.