SVHEF Awarded USDA GrantThe U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently awarded the Southern Virginia Higher Education Foundation (SVHEF) a Community Facilities grant of $25,000 to upgrade equipment in the IT Academy. The IT Academy (ITA) is a workforce training program at the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center (SVHEC) offering short-term, hands-on training leading to CompTIA credentials in A+ and Server+.

“Upgrading the infrastructure in the SVHEC’s IT Academy is necessary to ensure that the training being provided in that space is both cutting-edge and relevant to the needs of potential employers in the region. We’re grateful for the continued support of the USDA Office for Rural Development and the Southern Virginia Higher Education Foundation,” said Dr. Betty Adams, SVHEC Executive Director.

USDA grant funds will be used to upgrade the IT Academy’s datacenter to include fiber optic cabling, and the training program’s server technologies. The planned upgrades are in response to employer requests for trainees to have fiber optic cabling training as data centers have increasingly moved away from copper connections to end-to-end fiber connections. Employers also requested trainees have expanded training in new server technologies to include blade servers housed in a blade enclosure providing shared power, cooling, networking, and management infrastructure.

“The IT Academy is yet another example of the commitment of our Foundation to encourage economic development in the Southern Virginia region.  Completers of the IT Academy are securing stable, well-paying jobs right here at home.  We are very proud of this accomplishment.  We are also grateful to the USDA Office for Rural Development for their ongoing support of our Foundation and the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center,” said Tommy Nelson, SVHEF Executive Director

For more information about the SVHEC’s IT Academy visit, call 434-572-5660, or email