GREENSBORO, N.C. — Saturday, Toyota announced it is boosting workforce readiness and exposure to Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics.
The one million dollars that Toyota is investing will go towards expanding education opportunities for students at the Communities in Schools of Randolph County and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.
Both will each receive 500,000 dollars to help strengthen their STEAM education programs that support career readiness.
"We have 2,100 jobs to fill in North Carolina, so better preparing our next generation workforce is critical," said Sean Suggs, Toyota Battery Manufacturing, North Carolina president. "Toyota is committed to providing resources, time, and knowledge to help build stronger communities in which we operate. We’re grateful for our education partners that share the same passion.”
For Randolph County, the grant funds will support students through community of support and empower them to stay in school. This will be done through several programs, including the Jobs for America's Graduates program. It will provide students with weekend meals, academic tutoring, financial literacy and mentoring.
The Executive Director for Communities in Schools of Randolph County is also excited.
"We had several positions that are new in our grant funding and this will offer us some sustainability for some of those roles," Paula Owens, Executive Director for communities in schools of Randolph County.
The local nonprofit serves students by bringing in resources from the community into schools.
NC A&T will use the funds to establish the Toyota STEAM Lab in the College of Education. It will be designed for K-12 learners and provide Elementary and Secondary Education majors the space to practice teaching with different technologies. It will also have mentorship opportunities, projects between A&T students, the Aggie Academy elementary students and the high school students on campus.
"There is a great workforce that’s really been developed by A&T so we are all around excited about the opportunity," Paula Groves Price, Dean of college of Education at NCA&T said.
If you remember, at the end of 2021, Toyota announced they are building a $1.2 billion lithium battery plant for a new generation of vehicles in North Carolina.
Toyota said in August they will expand the Greensboro-Randolph Megasite. It will be investing an additional $2.5 billion at the site.
The investment adds the capacity to support battery electric vehicle battery production and adds 350 jobs, bringing the total employment to about 2,100.
Toyota is now working to fill those positions.
Toyota also released it's renderings of what the new megasite will look like once built.