NOVA receives $300,000 from Amazon Web Services to support programs that lead students to in-demand careers in the data center industry

The contribution, targeted for Information and Engineering Technologies (IET) Fund, coincides with NOVA’s physical expansion of its Data Center Operations (DCO) program to a third campus.

March 22, 2023

Annandale, Va. – Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) is excited to announce that Amazon Web Services (AWS) has made a $300,000 contribution to the NOVA Educational Foundation’s Information and Engineering Technologies (IET) Fund. This gift is the largest single private investment in NOVA’s IET Fund, which enables programs that create pathways to in-demand technology careers. The investment coincides with the physical expansion of NOVA’s groundbreaking Data Center Operations (DCO) program to a third campus, as well as with International Data Center Day, which aims to increase the awareness of the industry and the career opportunities it offers.

NOVA receives $300,000 from Amazon Web Services to support programs that lead students to in-demand careers in the data center industry.

NOVA currently offers DCO courses on its Loudoun and Manassas campuses, and last March, the college was awarded federal funding to expand the program to its Woodbridge campus. AWS’s generous investment also enables the college to explore and expand its IET programming into new areas of the data center ecosystem. The first project will be the development of a new Fiber Optic Technician career study certificate (CSC) program. Once established, this new critical program in infrastructure, fiber and cabling will prepare students for in-demand careers and help ensure the continued success of Northern Virginia's data center presence.

“AWS is proud to call Virginia home, and we’re passionate about continuing to make significant investments that support community programs and skills training initiatives that enhance the lives of Virginians,” said Roger Wehner, director, economic development at AWS. “Thanks to our ongoing collaboration with NOVA, we’ve been able to help expand access to in demand skills training programs that map individuals to good jobs and that are helping cultivate the next generation of tech talent across the Commonwealth.”

NOVA and AWS have collaborated for over five years, showing the strength and opportunity of public-private sector partnerships. Innovative programs, from apprenticeships to AWS Academy to innovative transfer pathways through ADVANCE, have launched the careers of many NOVA technology students who have pursued certificates and degrees.

Chad Knights, vice president of information and engineering technologies and college computing at NOVA, added “With this generous investment, NOVA can increase access to opportunities in the data center industry across our entire service area and build new programs that lead our students to additional in-demand career opportunities. This will also address local employers’ talent needs and help our Northern Virginia region continue to thrive.”

In addition to supporting the DCO program at all three campus locations, the IET Fund also spurs innovation across IET programs of study such as cybersecurity, data analytics and cloud computing.  Contributions to the IET Fund provide necessary dollars to purchase state-of-the-art equipment, learning resources and materials for IET programs.

For questions regarding the IET Fund, please contact Damian Sinclair, director of development at the NOVA Educational Foundation at For media inquiries regarding NOVA, please contact Hoang Nguyen, associate director of external communications at For media inquiries regarding AWS, please contact Rosa Salinas at

The NOVA Foundation was established in 1979 to raise private financial support to close the gap between Commonwealth funds and the resources required to offer excellence in programs to graduate highly sought-after talent. The mission of the educational foundation is to generate support for Northern Virginia Community College by raising funds, increasing visibility, and strengthening partnerships between the College and state and local communities. Funding supports programs with new campus buildings, the latest industry-specific equipment, programmatic innovation, and faculty retention to meet the demands of our region’s workforce. The Foundation supports more than 500 scholarships as well as academic innovation and inclusive excellence through robust annual grant programs that benefit the College's six campuses and NOVA Online. The NOVA Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation. All gifts are tax deductible as allowed by law.

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