2-16-2015: Gift Creates Scholarships for Veterans

Ron Demonet, managing director of Veteran Scholarships Forever (VSF), has created an endowed scholarship fund at Greenville Technical College. The fund’s purpose is to allow veterans and their spouses to successfully re-enter the workforce and thus provide for their families.

The first recipient of the scholarship is Scott Perry, an Army veteran discharged in 2012. A Greenville Technical College Health Sciences student ever since, Perry hopes to become a nurse or physician’s assistant. Scholarship funds will enable him to also complete the college’s eleven-week Phlebotomy program in April. With skills in collecting blood samples, he will have a strong foundation for entering the medical field, allowing him to work as he completes his education. “The Phlebotomy program will serve as a stepping stone toward my ultimate goal,” Perry said. “I’ll be able to gain experience as I make connections in the healthcare field.”

Demonet established the organization in 2013, seeing the high unemployment rate of veterans. While financial aid options may allow the veteran population to enroll in programs leading to associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates, those funds don’t apply to short-term, non-degree options that can deliver skills very quickly. The Veterans Scholarships Forever fund can provide funding for programs available at Greenville Technical College through the Corporate and Career Development Division.

"The most pressing issue for veterans transitioning out of the service is finding a good job,” Demonet said. “With a little training and job placement assistance, veterans can reenter the civilian workforce quickly. Greenville Tech, through the Corporate and Career Development Division, is an excellent source for both vocational training and job placement assistance. Since this type of training is not always eligible for state and federal financial aid, VSF is working to fill this funding void, and help Veterans and their spouses obtain training that will move them toward a rewarding career."

“Our student veterans will greatly benefit from this assistance,” said Anthony Davis, Greenville Technical College’s Director of Veterans Affairs. “We are grateful that this type of assistance will allow more veterans to make a successful transition from serving our country to employment.”
Individuals and organizations interested in supporting veterans education by donating to the fund can go to www.scholarshipsforever.org.

Veterans interested in applying for scholarships may contact Steve Hand, director of Greenville Technical College’s Quick Jobs with a Future program, at Steve.Hand@gvltec.edu or (864)250-8249 or Leslie Trant, Dean of Corporate and Career Development, at Leslie.Trant@gvltec.edu or (864)250-8600.

The Quick Jobs with a Future program allows working adults, or those in occupational transition, to quickly obtain skills matching the needs of local business and industry. The Quick Jobs program offers training and certifications that are skills specific and job preparatory with most courses lasting three months or less.

The Corporate and Career Development division provides courses in skilled trades and technical training, creative careers, business & process excellence, health care, and environmental, health and safety. Over 400 companies and 22,000 students each year take advantage of these opportunities.

The VSF scholarship adds to a group of services for student veterans at Greenville Technical College. A student support group, the Greenville Tech Veterans, meets monthly. A Student Veterans Center provides a setting where veterans can gather and study. In addition to funds donated by Veteran Scholarships Forever, scholarships are also available to veterans thanks to the Fluor Foundation and Hollingsworth Funds. In addition, special counseling and tutoring services have been made available with support from the Wal Mart Foundation.