In a unique partnership, the American Gas Association (AGA) and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) have created a welding scholarship program to benefit two Butte College students with full-ride scholarships.
The AGA donation of $30,000 will fund two Butte College welding scholarships each year for five years. The AGA donation benefits two full-time welding students enrolled in the Welding Technology certificate program with $3,000 each annually through 2017. Additionally, PG&E has provided a matching grant to this year's two AGA scholarship recipients, who will receive an additional $3,000 each in scholarship funds—which amounts to a full-ride scholarship for both welding students. The two students selected to receive a full-ride welding scholarship are Clayton Dewyer and Sam Orrison.
"This is a great opportunity for two of our top welding students, and we're thrilled to offer these full-ride scholarships through generous donations from the American Gas Association and Pacific Gas and Electric Company," said Dr. Kimberly Perry, Butte College President.
Dewyer entered Butte College in the fall of 2011. With a 3.63 GPA, Dewyer holds a general building contractor's license. He has completed training to be a Community Emergency Response Team member. Orrison started at Butte College in the Fall of 2012 and is a member of the American Welding Society since Spring of 2013. He received his National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) Level 1 Certification through the Butte College Welding program and maintains a 3.08 GPA.
"We are making an investment in helping to develop a skilled workforce capable of maintaining the 21st century technology that transports and utilizes clean natural gas to serve the needs of more than 177 million Americans," said Dave McCurdy, President and CEO of the American Gas Association.
Butte College's Welding Technology Program is one of the largest programs in Northern California and is well-respected in the welding industry. The program is active in the American Welding Society (AWS) and is one of the largest participating schools in our section. The Welding Technology Program is a full-time program, which includes 10 months of training, and some prerequisite courses. After completion of the Welding Technology Program, an additional eight-week petro-chemical and natural gas pipeline welding PowerPathway program is offered during the summer session.
"Utilities across the country are actively hiring and training new workers as a large portion of their workforce approaches retirement," said Chris Johns, president of PG&E and AGA Board member. "We are proud to partner with AGA and Butte College to offer this innovative scholarship opportunity that will assure highly skilled and qualified craftspeople will be available for the future to renew America's critical infrastructure."
About the American Gas Association:
The American Gas Association, founded in 1918, represents more than 200 local energy companies that deliver clean natural gas throughout the United States. There are more than 71 million residential, commercial and industrial natural gas customers in the U.S., of which 94 percent — over 68 million customers — receive their gas from AGA members. Today, natural gas meets more than one-fourth of the United States' energy needs.
About Pacific Gas and Electric Company:
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), and the PG&E Corporation Foundation strive to power strong communities throughout Northern and Central California. In 2013, PG&E contributed more than $23 million to more than 1,500 charitable organizations, including matching the generosity of employees who donated more than $6.5 million and volunteered more than 48,000 hours to company-supported events. Community investments are funded entirely by the company's shareholders. For more information, visit www.pge.com/community.
About Butte College:
Butte College is an accredited, student-focused, community college offering career and technical programs and general education classes to serve residents of Butte and Glenn Counties in Northern California. Butte College serves 13,000 students each semester.
The Butte College Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) organization that raises funds to support the needs and mission of the College. In addition to awarding and distributing scholarships each year, the Foundation supports programs and services on campus. Created in 1987, the Butte College Foundation relies on community donations to help students succeed. The Butte College Foundation can provide assistance to donors interested in leaving a lasting legacy through planned giving and/or scholarships in memory of a loved one. Visit www.butte.edu/foundation or call 530-895-2359 for more information.