Pasco-Hernando State College Volume XIV, Issue II Fall 2020 | Page 8

FOUNDATION NEWS Duke Energy Foundation Empowers Students For the third year in a row, Duke Energy has invested in engineering students at PHSC. A $25,000 grant in 2019-2020 helped to provide scholarships for students in Engineering and Design/Drafting programs, while also securing matching scholarship funds for firstgeneration students in these fields. Duke Energy’s contribution additionally funds the SkillsUSA program and supports students in achieving industry certifications such as AutoCAD. Support from the Duke Energy Foundation assists and prepares these students for competition with the proper uniforms and equipment, allowing students to focus solely on their projects. SkillsUSA is a nationwide partnership that brings students, teachers and industry partners together at the local, state and national level. Students demonstrate the correlation between their technical and academic learning and the needs of employers in high skill, wage and demand careers. More than 300,000 students and advisors annually participate in SkillsUSA. Prior to the SkillsUSA competitions suspension in the spring, several PHSC students participated in the club. Many were positioned to advance to state-level competition including welding student Josh Adams. “I have learned so much from my instructor but also fellow students. My instructor helped me one-on-one and encouraged me throughout the class, making sure I had a fighting chance since I was competing against competitors that are more skilled. SkillsUSA was a great learning experience that will definitely help me when I join the work force and eventually start my own business,” explained Adams. Josh Adams, PHSC welding student. 6 PHSC