Across from its regional headquarters in Whiteville, North Carolina, BB&T announced an exciting new partnership with four local community colleges from eastern North Carolina – as well as another piece of good news no one saw coming.
Director of Client Care, Client Engagement and Client First Solutions Candi Bass announced BB&T would be contributing grants totaling $1 million from the BB&T Charitable Fund to Southeastern Community College, Whiteville; Robeson Community College, Lumberton; Bladen Community College, Dublin; and Sampson Community College, Clinton.
The grants help champion education and job training that benefits the local community and will assist the colleges’ leadership teams in developing a technology curriculum to train and prepare students to be workforce ready.
But that wasn’t the only announcement BB&T was there to deliver.
Chief Client Experience Officer Dontá Wilson appeared at the podium to make the surprise announcement that BB&T plans to build an approximately 100,000-square-foot office facility at 301 S. JK Powell Blvd. in the heart of Whiteville.
The approximately $20 million building will bring together the 500 BB&T associates who currently work in nine locations in the Whiteville area including BB&T’s primary Client Care Center on James B. White Highway. BB&T expects to begin site work on the project during the first quarter of 2019 with an opening date yet to be determined.
At the conclusion of BB&T’s announcement, the excitement began rippling through the crowd of BB&T employees and local officials, and of course, the community.
"We're completely thrilled,” said Jennifer Holcomb, Columbus Chamber of Commerce president. “And while we launch efforts to recover from Hurricane Florence, this announcement will propel us to our future. It gives us such a great sense of hope. I am very thankful to the leadership of BB&T for investing in our future.”
Coupled with the possibility of more jobs and greater educational opportunities, BB&T’s long-term commitment to eastern North Carolina will have a positive, widespread impact.
“The impact will be far-reaching, not just from the local jobs and educational opportunities, but for the added positions that will provide clientele for our small businesses and the construction that will be a positive economic influx,” Holcomb said. “For a small community to have something so monumental, it will definitely be an identifier for Whiteville.”