KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) — Lenoir Community College was awarded a hefty grant from the Golden Leaf Foundation. The $1 million award will support aviation program upgrades.

The money will be used on things like aviation mechanics, construction of aircraft and more. This is to better prepare students for future careers.

“Careers in aviation are really lucrative careers,” said LCC President Dr. Rusty Hunt. “They’re high-paying, family-sustained jobs and the folks right here in our service area can take advantage of that and can work right here in our service area.”

The NC State Legislature is also giving the college $25 million to build an aviation center at the NC Global Transpark in Kinston. The center will be an aviation academy for high school students in Lenoir, Greene and Jones counties. The project is expected to start by the end of the year.