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Hampton University’s Virginia Workforce Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center focuses on helping those affected by the pandemic

In October 2020, Hampton University established the Virginia Workforce Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center (VWEIC) through the Department of Education Reimagine Workforce Preparation Grant. The VWEIC has been expanding the capability of the aspiring business owners and current entrepreneurs in order to assist with economic recovery as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The new center combines the resources of other two and four year institutions, experts on public and private business, and workforce agencies. Although stationed in Hampton, VA, VWEIC serves clients from all around the state who have been displaced due to COVID-19. VWEIC prioritizes those who lost employment due to COVID-19 and want to start a business, those starting a new business because the pandemic made theirs invaluable, and those looking to expand their current business. 

“The concept of workforce development can be traced back to the very conception of this world-class institution,” said Dr. William R. Harvey, Hampton University President. “Our founder, General Armstrong, said that his institution is built upon two concepts. One is a first-rate academic program. Today, that is called workforce development. Two is the development of character. He said that of the two, the development of character is the more important. I want everybody to know that as the 12th president of Hampton University, I feel the exact same way.”

The VWEIC seeks to serve a minimum of 3,000 participants while providing all services free of charge. Services include networking, mentorship, education, and assistance with financing strategies. 

“On behalf of Hampton University in partnership with Old Dominion University, the Virginia Workforce Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center’s goal is helping individuals impacted by the pandemic, in starting, transitioning or expanding their businesses,” said Dr. Kermit Crawford, VWIEC Executive Director. “The VWIEC is funded by the U.S. Department of Education and has resources to help in that effort.  If we can be of assistance, please call (757) 997-4066 or email us at VWIEC@hamptonu.edu. The Virginia Workforce Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center was founded to provide pathways and resources to Virginia’s aspiring, transitioning and established entrepreneurs impacted by the pandemic.”

You are welcome to visit the VWEIC website at https://virginiaworkforce.force.com/ or contact them at VWIEC@hamptonu.edu for additional information.