Big Stone Gap, VA -- Senator Mark Warner visited Mountain Empire Community College on Wednesday, August 22, addressing students and staff regarding the continued need of an educated workforce and the current economic challenges facing our nation.
Warner addressed MECC’s AIMS Higher scholarship students, stating that the US needs to maintain the best educational system in the world in order to compete in the global market. He said he believes community colleges are part of the solution to driving down the cost of higher education, with students starting for the first two years at a community college.
In the future economy, Warner said most jobs will require the completion of at least two-year degree program. As part of his initiative to improve educational attainment, Warner said it is critical to expand access to broadband in rural areas. Communities that don’t have broadband won’t be looked at for business locations, adding that one of his proudest moments as Governor was the location of CGI in Lebanon. The reason that project was successful and 400 jobs were created was because of the skills and work ethic of people in southwest Virginia, as well as access to broadband.
Warner spent time listening and talking with students and staff during his campus visit. He asked participants not to lose faith and hope in Congress as legislators continue to debate issues critical to progressing the nation.
For more information on Warner’s visit, please contact MECC’s Community Relations Office at (276) 523-7480.