Business View Magazine | March 2021

13 BUSINESS VIEW MAGAZINE MARCH 2021 NEW RIVER GORGE REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY MOVES FORWARDWITH STUDY ON AEROSPACE SKILLED TRAINING NEEDS J ina Belcher, executive director of the New River Gorge Regional Development Authority (NRGRDA), announced the selection of Pavlik and Associates to undertake a comprehensive review of skilled training needs for aerospace companies locating at the 105-acre site at Raleigh County Memorial Airport. “The development of aerospace manufacturing and innovation opportunities is one of the most compelling ways to diversify and grow the economy in southern West Virginia,” said Belcher. “Coming off the recent announcement of the $8.3 million site development at the airport, we want our workforce to be ready for the new companies locating at our Airport Industrial Park.” Belcher said the aerospace education and workforce study will be completed in 10 months and offer a roadmap for collaborating institutions – New River Community and Technical College (NRCTC) and West Virginia University Institute of Technology (WVU Tech) – to address the two- and four-year degree programs needed. She noted the recent focus on development of the airport site and creation of new jobs has caused many local citizens to contact both institutions to inquire about their respective aerospace and aviation training programs. This work is being funded by a $50,000 Appalachian Regional Commission POWER grant awarded to NRGRDA in 2020 as well as a matching award of the same amount from American Electric Power (AEP). OPENING L INES