Senators praise Chesapeake role in preparing regional workforce
Chesapeake College hosted both of Maryland’s U.S. senators on campus March 17 to celebrate federal funds recently awarded to the community college for regional workforce training.
Representatives from local government and area business leaders joined the campus community in celebrating the award of federal funds to expand workforce training options at Chesapeake.
In one of the last federal legislative actions of 2022, U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen (both D-Md.) secured $1.2 million in Congressionally Directed Spending for workforce training at Chesapeake College in the Fiscal Year 2023 omnibus funding bill.
The $1.2 million in federal funds will support expansion of Chesapeake’s popular welding program. Through Chesapeake’s program, students learn skills for high-demand jobs in the region. Program expansion includes a mobile welding training lab designed to reach students where they live and work.
Funds will also be used for the creation of an Advanced Manufacturing Program that will provide training in Computer-Aided Design, Computer-Aided Manufacturing, Computer Numerical Control Plasma, Computer Numerical Control Router, 3D printing, universal laser systems and robotics.
President Clifford P. Coppersmith noted that the event marked the first dual visit to Chesapeake’s campus by both of Maryland’s senators, but both legislators have been key supporters of higher education and, more specifically, Chesapeake.
“I have worked with both of these gentlemen since my arrival at Chesapeake in 2018 and am extremely grateful for their advocacy and support of Chesapeake as well as their mutual work to support many elements of community college policy and legislation that supports our students in particular and workforce programs in general,” Dr. Coppersmith said. “They are both highly visible national level leaders who strongly support higher education. They care about the Eastern Shore and I would like to personally thank them both for their work on the Higher Education Relief Act which was critical to assist Chesapeake and all community colleges across the country to get through the pandemic.”
Sen. Cardin responded with an expression of gratitude for Chesapeake’s role in regional economic development.
“Thank you to Chesapeake College for your leadership on the Eastern Shore,” he said.
Sen. Van Hollen added, “Chesapeake College is one of our treasures.”
Following a press conference in the Todd Performing Arts Center, the senators toured Chesapeake’s skilled trades facilities, where they learned more about workforce training offerings.
For more information about workforce training at Chesapeake, please visit www.chesapeake.edu/ce.