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CCC to use $25,000 for automotive, welding and industrial technology programs

Clackamas Community College is receiving a third round of funding from the rock band Metallica's All Within My Hands Foundation, according to an announcement from the college on July 21.

CCC was selected from community colleges across the country to receive $25,000 to help transform the future of students in the community.

The grant is funded by Metallica's All Within My Hands (AWMH) and led by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC).

The AWMH was founded in 2017 and supports workforce education, the fight against hunger and other critical local services. The AACC is a Washington, DC based organization that represents the nation's 1,103 community colleges.

Now in its third year, the Metallica Scholars Initiative was designed to directly support students while also elevating the importance of career and technical education. Schools are selected through a competitive application process and are given grant money to use in the manner in which they find most beneficial for their programs.

CCC intends to prioritize assisting students in the college's "heavy metals" programs in automotive, industrial technology and welding and support them with the purchase of tools, textbooks and personal protective equipment for the metals students. In addition, the college will provide funds and/or tuition waivers to offset tuition costs and offer emergency support to students in need.

"Thanks to this funding, our Metallica Scholars can get the tools, the supplies and the support they need to be successful in the classroom as well as land well-paying jobs upon graduation," said CCC Dean Cynthia Risan.

In 2019, the first year CCC won the grant, they were one of 10 colleges across the country to receive $100,000, which helped 84 students. When they won it for a second time in 2020, they were able to help 86 students in the technical work programs. According to the AWMH website, the program has been so successful that it prompted them to expand from 10 to 15 schools in 2020, and to 23 schools in 2021.

"The foundation and the band pay attention and follow these programs and students, and there is no doubt that lives have been changed. What makes this work so unique is that in addition to supporting students directly, our goal is not just to change individual lives, it is to unabashedly promote the trades as meaningful and well-paying career pathways. We are not afraid to be loud nor to dig in on things we believe in, and we believe in these students," said Dr. Edward Frank, executive director of AWMH.

"Colleges across the country provide pathways to well-paying jobs through programs, services and training that lead to in-demand skills, certificates and degrees for students. These programs are responsive to the needs of local businesses and provide a pipeline of qualified workers to local industry. It's a win-win for our students and the local economy. For Metallica to continue to invest in these students and communities is a testament to the power of the workforce education community colleges provide and we are proud to do this work with them," said Walter G. Bumphus, AACC's president and CEO.COURTESY PHOTO: CCC - Clackamas Community College Metallica Scholars from the first-year cohort in 2019 gather to celebrate the program.

This work is highlighted at a global level by leveraging the influence of Metallica who continue to speak out on the dignity of professional trades and community colleges that prepare students.

James Hetfield, Metallica's vocalist/guitarist and co-founder said, "As a touring entity we are in direct involvement with multiple essential career choices along our path. From electrical, professional driving, culinary, mechanical maintenance, public safety, logistical organizers. And that just scratches the surface. Those, along with a multitude of other technical careers, make our touring and our performances possible. We are passionate and grateful to these trades and tradespeople."

According to the All Within My Hands Foundation website, Metallica continues to spread its philanthropic efforts by donating a portion of ticket sales in every city visited to a local charity (predominantly food banks) and by encouraging fans to join both Metallica and AWMH in giving back around the world.

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