The Grayson County Technology Center provides real world opportunities for skills and career training, and those opportunities were recently expanded by the awards of two grants to its programs.

The first was a $5,000 grant announced last week for the CMM (Machining) Program from the Gene Haas Foundation of Haas Automation, which is renowned for its support of schools and technical institutions.

Teacher Michael Critchelow said the award is “a great opportunity for expanding the program.”

The funds will be used to grow the school’s NIMS industry certification program.

NIMS credentials provide applicants a competitive edge when applying for jobs because they have demonstrated that their skills meet the industry established standards. These credentials never expire.

Funds from this award will also benefit graduating seniors as scholarships for continued study in the high-demand machining field.

Then, it was announced this week that the Grayson County Technology Center had also received a $1,000 grant from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

This funding will be used to purchase a new 3D printer for the school’s Computer Science pathway, which launched this year.

TVA Government Relations Manager Virginia Gray recently visited the school for a tour and check presentation to Technology Center Director Matt Hayes and Michael Critchelow, who teaches the school’s 3D Printing class. They were joined by state Rep. Samara Heavrin, who introduced the grant opportunity to Hayes.

The growth of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programming has been been on the rise in recent years, and TVA has recognized the importance of this increased interest and demand by providing grant opportunities to schools, particularly in the areas of environment, energy, economic and career development, and community problem solving.

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