With a focus on creating pathways to employment for adolescents and adults through skills training and life learning opportunities, Global Vocational Training Center (GVTC) is passionate about empowering a distressed community. The organization provides a clear path to success by teaching electrical, HVAC, and solar trade to students at no cost.
“The trades are the most effective way to uplift a distressed hopeless individual or community out of poverty,” Michael Norman, President of GVTC, said.
The training center initially faced difficulties maintaining its services when the COVID-19 outbreak reached Charlotte. The organization had to reduce its class sizes and transitioned some courses to virtual learning to continue serving the community.
Additionally, GVTC faced financial challenges because it couldn’t continue its contract with Mecklenburg County Sherriff’s Office. As a result, GVTC saw a reduction in the organization’s overall funding and community presence.
Determined to still help those in need transform their lives, the GVTC received a Workforce Partner Support Grant from the Charlotte Open For Business program.
The grant helped 22 students, allowing the organization to buy more training equipment such as smart boards, computers, and course-specific materials and tools. The smart boards allowed GVTC to teach virtual classes on Zoom, which helped the organization better manage its social distancing efforts.
“The grant has helped us train with more high-tech equipment,” Norman said. “The equipment we purchased made the students more excited with the hands-on labs.”
The COVID-19 relief funding also helped the organization expand its training team by hiring an HVAC specialist to teach lab training as well as a leadership coach to mentor the students.
As the organization plans for the future, GVTC intends to expand its class offerings to include solar installation. The organization will also add more strategically placed locations in Charlotte and the surrounding areas to allow potential students to attend a Vocational Training Center in their neighborhood.
Global Vocational Training Center received a Workforce Partner Support Grant from Charlotte Open For Business. Through the grant program, the City of Charlotte has awarded $3.5 million to workforce partners to provide programs for our community.