Industries Education

Virginia colleges and universities get $530,000 in grants

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The Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Richmond-based Dominion Resources, has awarded grants totaling $530,000 to 16 Virginia colleges and universities. Dominion is the parent company of Dominion Virginia Power, the state’s largest electric utility.

The grants are part of Dominion’s Higher Educational Partnership program, which coordinates company’s support of higher education with its work-force needs.

Dominion accepts applications for grant of up to $50,000 each for programs aimed at developing a skilled work force in areas critical to the company. These areas include academic subjects such as business, engineering, energy production, environmental science and information technology plus training in skills such as welding and power-line construction and maintenance.

The Virginia institutions receiving grants included eight public universities, five community colleges and three private universities.

The recipients include:
• George Mason University Foundation, Fairfax County, $50,000 to purchase a Universal Testing Machine for the Civil, Environmental, and Infrastructure Engineering Teaching Laboratory.
• George Washington University, Arlington, $20,000 to develop a new senior-level elective course on biofuels. 
• Hampton University, Hampton, $35,000 to upgrade the energy conversion laboratory by buying equipment and instructional materials for undergraduates. 
• John Tyler Community College, Chester, $25,000 to purchase new biology laboratory equipment. 
• Lord Fairfax Community College Foundation, Middleton, $20,000 to create and support of a student environmental sustainability committee that will implement green practices and infrastructure on campus.
• Marymount University, Arlington, $20,000 for the construction of an on-campus rain garden, project that will allow students to research watershed issues.
• Old Dominion University, Norfolk, $40,000 for the installation of a rooftop solar energy system as part of a renewable energy curriculum for engineering students.
• Piedmont Virginia Community College, Charlottesville, $25,000 to create a mobile computer lab equipped with laptop computers and specific software for use by engineering and accounting students. 
• Southwest Virginia Community College, Richlands, $40,000 for the Energy Sustainability Project, which will allow students to design and construct an energy-efficient, sustainable building.
• Thomas Nelson Community College Educational Foundation, Hampton, $40,000 to support student renovation of the existing greenhouse by installing a green roof. 
• University of Virginia, Charlottesville, $35,000 for undergraduate research measuring the environmental and engineering effects of the removal of small dams. 
• University of Virginia’s College at Wise, $30,000 for development of a River Walk along the Guest River in partnership with the City of Norton. Students will study the environmental impact of the project.
• Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, $35,000 for a student-led study of the feasibility of using hydrokinetics as an alternative energy source for the Rice House near the James River. 
• Virginia Military Institute Foundation, Lexington, $40,000 for the CLEAR (Clean Energy and Air Resources) Program, a collaborative effort with Virginia Tech, that focuses on alternative and sustainable energy research.
• Virginia State University, Ettrick, $50,000 to expand a digital textbook pilot project aimed at reducing costs and increasing retention among business school students.
• Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, $25,000 for its Green Energy and Carbon Management Program. which will include two undergraduate courses, a series of seminars and field trips.


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