Pub. 4 2022 Issue 9

Penn Community Bank, Bucks County Community College Partner to Support Local Workforce Development: $140,000 Donation Supports College’s New Center for Advanced Technologies, Student Scholarships

This story appears in the
Hometown Banker Pub 4 2022 Issue 9

An educated and highly skilled workforce is essential to a flourishing local economy.

Penn Community Bank, the largest mutual bank in eastern Pennsylvania, is investing in local workforce development with a $140,000 donation to support Bucks County Community College’s new state-of-the-art Center for Advanced Technologies building and programs at the College’s Gene & Marlene Epstein Campus at Lower Bucks in Bristol, PA. The bank’s contribution will support scholarships and workforce development programs and will play a direct role in the future successes of Bucks students.

The 28,000 sq. ft. building offers manufacturing and industrial skills courses with a focus on professional development for incumbent workers and workforce training programs for job seekers. The Center houses the College’s highly successful manufacturing pre-apprenticeship programs, in addition to a new welding program, CDL training, industrial safety, and soon-to-come building and construction trades pre-apprenticeship and HVAC programs. In addition, the Center offers online workforce training in Microsoft Office Technology, Bookkeeping with Quickbooks, and ESL (English as a Second Language). New programs are planned in robotics, public safety drone training, and 3D printing.

“Penn Community Bank is and continues to be one of the leading institutions in corporate giving and social responsibility in Pennsylvania. It is truly an honor for Bucks County Community College to be one of Penn’s benefactors, as well as one of their trusted community partners,” said Bucks County Community College President Dr. Felicia L. Ganther. “Today’s gift towards the College’s New Center for Advanced Technologies is a testament to Penn Community Bank’s commitment to ensuring that our future learners have educational opportunities that will prepare them for the jobs of tomorrow. We are extremely grateful for Penn Community Bank’s investment in post-secondary education opportunities for the residents of Bucks County.” 

“An educated and highly skilled workforce is essential to a flourishing local economy. Community Colleges are in a untie position to help workers make themselves more attractive to prospective employers and, in turn, strengthen businesses. Naturally, Penn Community Bank saw Bucks as an ideal partner,” said Jeane M. Vidoni, president and CEO of Penn Community Bank. “As a part of the community, we saw it as our job as a corporate citizen to support and expand the reach of this program to help local companies grow, and individuals and families thrive in a difficult economic period.”

Construction of the Center for Advanced Technologies is nearing completion. This is more than a building; it’s a new approach to the College’s Workforce Development program. This new building will move the program to where it truly belongs – one of the college’s campuses. Since the program’s inception, advanced manufacturing training and workforce programs have been held in a rented warehouse space. Over the past few years, the Center for Workforce Development at Bucks has trained and graduated nearly 400 advanced manufacturing students in its two pre-apprenticeship programs and boasts a 92% job placement rate.

Manufacturing is one of the top three industries in Bucks County, with local manufacturers employing nearly 30,000 people or 14% of the total workforce. As existing workers retire, the projected skills gap equates to more than 3,000 unfilled manufacturing jobs in Bucks County by 2025 and two million nationwide. To help close this gap, Bucks County Community College partners with businesses to provide customized training for current employees and develops industrial training programs that feed the workforce pipeline.

Penn Community Bank, an associate member of PACB, holds more than $2.6 billion in assets, employs more than 300 people, and offers banking and lending services at 20+ bank branches and three administrative centers throughout southeastern Pennsylvania. As an independent, mutual financial institution, Penn Community Bank is not publicly traded. It operates with its long-term mission in mind: to help businesses grow and prosper, to provide financial resources to individuals and families throughout their lifetimes, to strengthen the local economy, and to partner with local organizations to act as a catalyst for positive growth in every market it serves. In support of this mission, Penn Community Bank’s charitable arm, the Penn Community Bank Foundation, contributes 5% of the institution’s net income each year to area nonprofits and community groups making a difference in the region.

Pictured: Tracy Timby, Interim Associate Vice President for Strategic Partnerships & Workforce Innovation, BCCC; Andrew States, Assistant Director, BCCC Foundation;  Jeane M. Vidoni, President & CEO, Penn Community Bank; Dr. Felicia L. Ganther, President, BCCC; Christina Kahmar-McGinley, CFRE, Executive Director, BCCC Foundation;  Bernard Tynes, Chief Marketing & Impact Officer, Penn Community Bank; Susan Herring, Executive Director, Workforce Development, BCCC