Botetourt County and Botetourt Technical Education Center receive GO Virginia Grant

On Dec. 13, the GO Virginia State Board announced its approval of three new Region 2 projects aimed at growing the regional economy. Region 2 consists of the cities of Covington, Lynchburg, Radford, Roanoke, and Salem, and the counties of Alleghany, Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford, Botetourt, Campbell, Craig, Floyd, Franklin, Giles, Montgomery, Pulaski, and Roanoke.

Botetourt County is receiving one of these grants for the following project in partnership with Botetourt Technical Education Center (BTEC) and Botetourt County Schools:

The Botetourt Technical Education Center (BTEC) will enhance the region’s capacity to train and prepare welders. The GO Virginia funding will help support the installation of 10 new welding booths at BTEC’s campus in Fincastle. This expansion is projected to deliver 45 new welders to the regional workforce over the initial three-year project term. The GO Virginia board approved a total of $166,667 in state funds for the project, which is leveraging $83,333 in non-state sources.

“The welding program at Botetourt Technical Education Center is one of the very few high school level welding programs in the United States to be certified by the American Welding Society,” said Ken McFadyen, director of Economic Development for Botetourt County. “This funding will allow us to expand the facility’s capacity to train more students in welding skills, who will go on to become credentialed and gain employment in the region, helping to keep talent local.”

GO Virginia is a statewide initiative designed to encourage Virginia’s economic growth through the creation of high-wage jobs. Virginia Tech’s Center for Economic and Community Engagement serves as region 2’s support organization.

~ Fincastle Herald staff report