SunTrust Bank donates $30,000 to Youth Apprenticeship Programs

Jason Hessberg (from left), Relationship Manager, SunTrust Bank; Dave Fichman, Commercial Relationship Manager, SunTrust Bank; Mark Lattanzio, Charleston Region President and CEO, SunTrust Bank; Mary Graham, Chief Advancement Officer, Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce; Melissa Stowasser, Director of High School Programs, Trident Technical College; Karen Winninhgam, Senior Technical Training Specialist, Bosch; Pete Bailey, President and CEO, C.R. Hipp Construction.

Charleston, SC - SunTrust Bank made a generous contribution to the region's Youth Apprenticeship Programs, further exemplifying the company's commitment to assisting high school students to become career-ready. SunTrust's Region President and CEO Mark Lattanzio presented a $30,000 donation to the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce to support the regional collaboration.

Youth Apprenticeship Programs are increasing metro Charleston's talent pipeline for today's and tomorrow's employers in high demand occupations. Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, Trident Technical College and area businesses work together to provide apprenticeships across the region in multiple career pathways.

SunTrust Bank and the SunTrust Foundation have been highly involved in the region's talent development initiatives and provide support in numerous ways, including the provision of time, talent and treasure. With the generous donation to support the Youth Apprenticeship Programs, Mark Lattanzio stated, "SunTrust is deeply committed to supporting the community, and through the Youth Apprenticeship Programs, we know we are helping students build successful futures for themselves, their families and for the continued prosperity of our region. We are all hungry for talent and expanding the apprenticeship program with more businesses and more students helps us all grow talent from within our region."

Representatives from two Youth Apprenticeship Program partners, Bosch and C.R. Hipp Construction, expressed appreciation for the SunTrust donation and the Youth Apprenticeship Programs. "Bosch is very excited to be at the forefront of opening these career pathways to our students," said Karen Winningham, Senior Technical Training Specialist for the global automotive industry manufacturer. Bosch was one of the first companies in the region to offer apprenticeships as part of the collaboration and has apprenticed several students thus far.

Pete Bailey, President and CEO of C.R. Hipp Construction, which specializes in mechanical construction projects, voiced his support. "We are very happy to be part of this program. This gives us the ability to introduce our youth to the career opportunities in our profession and an opportunity to gain invaluable work experience."

Youth Apprenticeships prepare rising high school juniors and seniors for rewarding careers in a variety of fields. Students are hired by local companies as apprentices, and work while also taking dual credit courses toward certification, credentialing and an associate's degree. Coursework at Trident Technical College is paid for by the Charleston Metro Chamber, allowing the student the ability to finish the program with zero college debt. At the end of the two-year program, students will have earned a high school diploma, certification in a specific field from Trident Tech, credentialing from the U.S. Department of Labor, college credit, two years of paid work experience, and likely, offers for continued employment with a generous salary and benefits.

There are more than 61 companies and 74 students participating in the Youth Apprenticeship Programs, which offers ten pathways in the fields of Manufacturing, Engineering, IT, Auto Tech, CAD, Health, Culinary and HVAC. To join the companies offering Youth Apprenticeships and developing highly trained future employees, contact Mitchell Harp, Trident Technical College at or Robin Willis, Charleston Metro Chamber at