A. For purposes of this section:”Apprenticeship program” means a three-year program combining educational instruction and on-the-job training that is established for the purpose of enhancing the education and skills of shipyard workers.”College” means the Tidewater Community College.”Industrial applied sciences” may include applied sciences such as welding, burning, blasting, and other applied sciences.”Shipyard worker” means any employee employed full time on a salaried or wage basis, whose tenure is not restricted as to temporary or provisional appointment, at a ship manufacturing or ship repair company located in the Commonwealth.
B. Subject to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia’s authority to approve or disapprove all new academic programs as provided in subdivision 5 of § 23-9.6:1, the college may offer a three-year program of educational instruction that incorporates instruction in industrial applied sciences. An Associate in Applied Science Degree shall be conferred on any person successfully completing such academic program. The college may coordinate such academic program with an apprenticeship program offered to shipyard workers by their employers.
C. Beginning in the calendar year that the Council approves such academic program and for calendar years thereafter, shipyard workers who are (i) domiciled residents of Virginia as described in § 23-7.4 and (ii) enrolled as full- or part-time students in such academic program, shall be eligible for scholarships for such program. Renewal of the scholarships of such shipyard workers shall be contingent upon maintaining (a) enrollment in such academic program, (b) a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a scale of 4.0 or its equivalent at the completion of each academic year, and (c) full-time employment as a shipyard worker.
D. Before any scholarship is awarded in accordance with the provisions of this section, the scholarship recipient shall sign a promissory note under which he agrees (i) to continue full-time employment as a shipyard worker until his graduation and (ii) upon graduation, to work continuously as a shipyard worker for the same number of years that he was the beneficiary of such scholarship. The college shall recover the total amount of funds awarded as a scholarship, or the appropriate portion thereof, including any accrued interest, if the scholarship recipient fails to honor such requirements.
E. There is hereby created the Virginia Vocational Incentive Scholarship Program for Shipyard Workers to provide scholarships to shipyard workers enrolled at the college either in such academic program or in the apprenticeship program.
F. From such funds as are appropriated for this purpose and from such gifts, donations, grants, bequests, and other funds as may be received on its behalf, there is hereby created in the state treasury a special nonreverting fund to be known as the Virginia Vocational Incentive Scholarship Program for Shipyard Workers Fund, referred to in this section as “the Fund.” The Fund shall be established on the books of the Comptroller. Interest earned on moneys in the Fund shall remain in the Fund and be credited to it. Any moneys remaining in the Fund, including interest thereon, at the end of each fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund but shall remain in the Fund. Funds may be paid to the college on behalf of shipyard workers who have been awarded scholarships pursuant to subsection C and shipyard workers in the apprenticeship program. Funds may also be used for the administration and implementation of such academic program and/or the apprenticeship program.Expenditures and disbursements from the Fund shall be made by the State Treasurer on warrants issued by the Comptroller upon written request signed by the President of Tidewater Community College.
G. The Council shall promulgate regulations for the implementation of the provisions of this section and the college shall award scholarships to eligible students for no more than three academic years. Scholarship amounts shall not exceed full tuition and required fees relating to such academic program or the apprenticeship program.
2001, c. 656; 2014, c. 484.