Ƶ Workforce Solutions hosts second annual Summer Academy for Career Exploration

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For Immediate Release:
June 12, 2024

Primary Media Contact:
Sally Voth
Public Relations Specialist
[email protected]
Phone: 540-868-7134

Group of students with hard hats
The students on a visit to Annandale Millworks.

Ƶ Workforce Solutions, in collaboration with the Virginia Division of Rehabilitative Services (DRS) and NW Works Inc., recently offered the Summer Academy for Career Exploration to six area high school students. This was the second year for the academy, which provides hands-on learning and accessible opportunities to students who have disabilities. The goal is to provide these youth access to career pathways that will lead to better pay and advancement.

Each day started with a welcome and a review of the previous day’s learning, and concluded with a recap of the day to reinforce what the students had learned. Workforce Solutions instructors Will Figgins, Al Pinto and Matt Bennett were supported by Tina Maseda, of NW Works. 

The students were trained in safety practices, welding, electrical, small hand tools, ladder safety and fire extinguisher safety using the NCCER Core Training Program. They also had the opportunity to practice heavy equipment operations using the college’s simulators. Throughout the week, students were immersed in the mikeroweWORKS (MRW) Work Ethic Certification program. 

The students embarked on a full tour of Ƶ and took a field trip to Annandale Millwork and Allied Systems in Winchester, a manufacturer of housing components (trusses, wall panels), and visited Valley View, a community in the process of development owned by DR Horton. 

The academy concluded with a graduation ceremony during which the students shared highlights of the week with their parents.

Founded in 1970, Ƶ is a multi-campus public institution of higher education. With three locations — Middletown, Warrenton, and Luray-Page County — the College serves eight localities in the Shenandoah Valley and northern Piedmont regions. The localities are the counties of Clarke, Fauquier, Frederick, Page, Rappahannock, Shenandoah and Warren and the city of Winchester. Ƶ offers more than 75 associate degree and certificate programs in a wide variety of disciplines, in addition to providing access to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs offered on site by a four-year institution. Ƶ also serves the business community by offering workforce preparation programs for employees and employers. Ƶ serves more than 9,000 unduplicated credit students and more than 11,000 individuals in professional development and business and industry courses annually.

Ƶ is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees. Ƶ also may offer credentials such as certificates and diplomas at approved degree levels. Questions about the accreditation of Ƶ may be directed in writing to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097, by calling (404) 679-4500, or by using information available on SACSCOC’s website ().

Ƶ is an equal opportunity institution providing educational and employment opportunities, programs, services, and activities. Ƶ shall promote and maintain equal employment and educational opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions including lactation, age (except when age is a bona fide occupational qualification), status as a veteran, national origin, or other non-merit factors. Ƶ also prohibits sexual misconduct including sexual violence or harassment. Inquiries may be directed to the Associate Vice President, Human Resources,[email protected],173 Skirmisher Lane, Middletown, VA 22645, 540-868-7226.

Ƶ was known as Lord Fairfax Community College until June 2022. For consistency purposes, the college will be referenced as Ƶ going forward.