(Charleston) Senate Bill 1, increasing access to career education and workforce training, completed legislation on Thursday. It now awaits a signature by the government.
The bill creates an Advanced Career Education (ACE) program that provides training that leads to an associate’s degree or advanced certification in a field that the West Virginia Department of Commerce has determined is an area of workforce need. The bill also creates the West Virginia Invests Grant Program, which will provide recipients with a grant to cover the “last dollar in” of tuition at one of the state’s community and technical colleges or an associate’s degree at a public four-year college. The legislation requires the student to meet certain conditions including maintaining a minimum grade point average, completing a number of volunteer hours per semester, and passing a drug test. The student must live in West Virginia for two years after completing the program or repay the grant back to the state.