Pierpont C&TC new program will prepare students with intellectual disabilities for careers


FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Pierpont Community & Technical College received a $150,000 grant to offer classes to students with intellectual disabilities in their new Pierpont Rapid Intellectual Disabilities Education (PRIDE) program. 

Pierpont logo (WBOY Image)

Select students will take classes in subjects such as basic math and communication to prepare them for careers upon course completion. The community college will pair the students who pass the course with businesses all over north central West Virginia.  

“The importance of preparing students for the complexities of adulthood continues to be increasingly necessary if individuals with intellectual disabilities are to be independent,” said Pierpont’s Interim President Anthony Hancock. “This grant will provide support for students with intellectual and Education that Works!” 

The program will focus on retail, childcare, teacher assistants, dining/food services, culinary arts, and healthcare-patient escort. 

The funds from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation will be used to hire personnel, training, supplies, travel and curriculum design.  

Pierpont Community & Technical College hopes to fill 10 spots in the new program that begins in the fall of 2022. 

“Pierpont is a community college with an open-door admissions policy and out job as a community college is to meet the workforce needs and to service the residents of north central west Virginia. So, this is part of our mission, and this is what community colleges do best,” Lyla Grandstaff, Pierpont’s vice president of student services and enrollment management said.  

Pierpont sign for admissions (WBOY Image)

The PRIDE program is modeled after a successful vocational advancement and skill training program currently offered through Houston Community College in Texas.  

Grandstaff said she thinks it will be a popular and successful program that will continue into the future.  

Applications are not yet on Pierpont’s website but in the meantime, anyone interested can contact Grandstaff at LGrandstaff@Pierpont.edu or call 304-367-4907.  

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