Nurses in the hall concentrated.

Addressing employment inequality in South Hampton Roads

Tidewater Community College is helping people in underserved communities prepare for well-paid careers

The South Hampton Roads region of Virginia has an unemployment rate that exceeds the national average — 4.87% versus 3.8% as of April 2024 — with Black/African American and Hispanic-Latino residents experiencing higher rates of joblessness.footnote1 These residents are also less likely to have resources for post-secondary education.

Tidewater Community College (TCC), a community partner since 1968, is committed to addressing these inequalities by providing job and skills-based training, tapping the resources of its Center for Workforce Solutions to help people from all backgrounds prepare for high-quality jobs. One recent program launched by TCC, Racial Equity Through Accessible Credentials and Training (REACT), aimed to remove educational and employment barriers to living-wage employment. The initiative included targeted recruitment, comprehensive assessments, intensive counseling, training and work-based learning, as well as job-placement assistance.

Bank of America supported the program, a commitment that has helped TCC continue its mission of helping Black/African American and Hispanic-Latino students find careers in high-demand, well-paid sectors such as healthcare, IT, logistics and transportation. In particular, the funding helped TCC’s Center for Workforce Solutions give 60 individuals the opportunity to take part in workforce training, providing a pathway to a living-wage job and a more equitable future.

The support for TCC is an example of how, from entrepreneur funding and expanding homeownership to professional skills training and healthcare access, Bank of America continues to partner with innovative leaders to help communities implement solutions to society’s important challenges.

Greater Hampton Roads Community Indicators Dashboard, accessed April 2024; Bureau of Labor Statistics, “The Employment Situation—March 2024,” April 5, 2024. 



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