Lt. Gov. Evette addresses students during 3rd annual event at the S.C. State House

Lt. Gov. Evette addresses students during 3rd annual event at the S.C. State House

Originally published by ABC 25 Columbia, by Lee Williams, April 9, 2024

COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO) — Students from 30 different colleges and universities across South Carolina were recognized at the Statehouse Tuesday afternoon for the 3rd Annual Higher Education Day.

The event honors students currently working on their degrees while also encouraging young high schoolers to see attending a college, university, or technical college as a viable path.

Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette addressed the students directly, saying, “Continue to dream big. When you dream big, the sky is the limit for you. Anytime I talk to students I like to say what my dad told me and my 3 older brothers. Always work hard, do good, and aim higher, and we will continue to set our state on a path that we could never even dream of.”

Evette says when she came into her position six years ago, only 41% of South Carolinians held a secondary degree. But as Dr. Gregory Little with the SC Commission on Higher Education explains, affordability efforts by the General Assembly aim to see more youth choose higher education.

“For example in the fiscal year 2021-2022 budget, South Carolina increased need based grants from $20 million to $60 million. And doubled tuition grants from $10 million to $20 million. Need based grant funding increased to $70 million in 22-23 and to $80 million in 23-24,” Little says.

Claflin University Senior Erin Thomas says school provides her with the opportunity to chase her dream of being an OBGYN.

“I’m really interested in women’s health, and I know that it’s very prone that we have a lot of different diseases that creep up on us, so I want to keep them engaged, keep them inspired and keep them educated on different things so they can keep themselves healthy and bare the longevity,” says Thomas.

Allen University’s Student President Preston Conner, Jr. says he wants to be a member of the secret service one day. School, he says, will help him reach that goal.

“I feel like education plays a major role in your life. Because without an education you’re limited about stuff you can do. People with an education have a better chance of getting a job, have a better background and something to put on their resume; have more experience,” says Conner.

And Benedict College Sophomore Kenly Rouse is a psychology major. His message to high schoolers?

“Take your time, weigh out all of your options. The sky is the limit. Don’t rush it. Just breathe, be patient and put God first in everything you do,” Rouse says.

Speakers also encouraged students to remain in South Carolina after graduation and help strengthen our state. Around 238,000 students attend 75 higher education institutions across South Carolina.

SC state leaders stress importance of not littering

SC state leaders stress importance of not littering

Originally published Apr 3, 2024 by Alex Tejada, ABC Columbia

COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO) — You might think tossing trash on the side of the road is not a big deal but South Carolina littering laws could mean you end up with a fine or worse. 

Tuesday at the statehouse, Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette, along with Palmetto Pride and the South Carolina Litter Control Association, kicked off a zero tolerance for litter campaign for the month of April.

“Just don’t throw your trash where it doesn’t belong. That’s the easiest solution to most of life’s problems,” said Sarah Lyles, director of Palmetto Pride. “If it’s a big problem, don’t just throw it on the ground. Put it in a trash can or recycle it.”

Tuesday, state leaders kicked off a zero tolerance for litter campaign. Litter can pollute South Carolina’s soil and water as well as impact the environment in other ways.

“In South Carolina, we have flooding issues. When we have people litter and illegally dump, it fills in storm drains,” Lyles said. “We’re a southern state so we have waters flowing from other states. We have stormwater runoff that can clog storm drains and cause flooding. We see that in South Carolina.”

The Department of Public Safety also sees the harm that litter can cause on the roadways.

“It also can be a safety hazard,” said Col. Dean Dill. “Over 730 people get killed nationally a year because of objects in the roadway and 17,000 get injured.”

You might think that littering only trashes the community, but it can also land you in quite a bit of legal trouble depending on the offense.

“The worse the crime, the higher the fine and jail time,” Lyles said. “We also have mandatory community service. Officers and judges are allowed to give litter pickup for community service hours. We can assign roads and give them the supplies to do it and clean up.”

So if you throw trash, you might find yourself picking it back up, as well as paying a fine of anywhere from $25 to up to a $1,000

“Enforcement is always there to meet a goal.” Dill said. “It’s to keep people safe and gain compliance. That’s what we’re there for.”

If you are interested in helping clean up your community through a trash pickup, find out how to get involved or attend a specific event.

Ghana Association Celebrates 67th Independence in South Carolina with Keynote by Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette

Ghana Association Celebrates 67th Independence in South Carolina with Keynote by Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette

Original Posted in The Humanity Herald on March 25 2024

Spartanburg, SC – The Ghana Association of the Upstate SC marked Ghana’s 67th Independence Day with an event showcasing the rich cultural heritage and vibrant spirit of the Ghanaian community in South Carolina. Held on March 23, 2024, at the Cleveland Park Event Center, the celebration drew esteemed guests, including the Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina, Pamela Sue Evette, who delivered an inspiring keynote address.

The event began with drums welcoming guests to a cocktail hour. Guests were invited into the event hall after the initial hour of networking. After an opening prayer by Rev. Amos Durham of the Spartanburg Sheriff’s Office, the audience received a warm welcome from Spartanburg Mayor Pro Tem Janie Salley.

With Kodwo Ghartey-Tagoe, EVP & Chief Legal Officer Duke Energy Corporation, as the Chairperson of the evening, the event was not just a tribute to Ghana’s independence but also a vivid showcase of the enduring ties and cultural exchange between Ghana and the United States. Through gatherings like this, the Ghanaian community in South Carolina continues to foster a deeper appreciation for their heritage while contributing richly to the multicultural diversity of the region.

In addition to the Lieutenant Governors keynote which highlighted her experience as the descendant of Polish immigrants, the event included dance performances from the Gye Nyame Cultural Ensemble, poetry recitals, the singing of both national anthems, cultural displays, authentic Ghanaian meals, music, dancing, fundraising, and laughter.

The evening was captivating and memorable. The celebration showcased a variety of dishes cooked by individuals of Ghanaian heritage from the Upstate area, allowing guests to savor authentic Ghanaian cuisine. The food display included jollof rice, waakye, kenkey, fufu, soup, chicken, salmon, salads, rock buns, plantain chips, and more. The colorful kente themed food display table also included authentic Ghanaian drinks such as sobolo and ekumfi juice. The peanut cake/brizzle provided by Rosemond Owens of Minnesota was a popular dessert item.

The event planning committee, including Abby Solomon – Azumah, Charles Agyeman, Nat Buah-Kwofie, Reverend Jefferson Crystal, and Ben Azumah, played a crucial role in the smooth execution of the event, coordinating everything from volunteer efforts to food delivery, setup, and cleanup.

The event was spearheaded by the dynamic Ghanaian American author and Spartanburg resident, Marjorie Boafo Appiah, also known as Marjy Marj. Her centerpieces adorned with Ghanaian woodwork added an artistic flair to the tables. Marjy’s meticulous attention to detail was evident in the decorated hall, featuring floral arrangements from Coggins Flowers, and serving utensils from Event Rentals, Spartanburg, creating an ambiance that was both elegant and welcoming. As the author of ‘The Jollof Project’ a book based on two Spartanburg fourth graders who embarked on a cooking competition, Marjy cooked her jollof recipe (among other dishes) for the guests.

The balloon decor, created by Angela Butler of Spartanburg, included Ghana-themed elements adding a patriotic touch to the setting. The backdrop of the flags of the United States and Ghana, framing the podium captured the spirit of love for both countries.

In attendance were reporters from Fox News, covering the celebration and its significance to the local and broader community. Attendees included representatives from the African-American and African communities, Duke Energy, BMW, City and State Officials, Furman University, the community at large, and several benefactors.

Photography was provided by Jeremiah Drummond of South Carolina, ensuring the event’s vibrancy and exuberance were preserved. The music was provided by DJ Master Berto.

The Ghanaian Association of Upstate South Carolina is a social  association of Ghanaians, people of Ghanaian descent, and friends of  Ghana residing in the state of South Carolina and surrounding towns  and suburbs.

Subsequent independence and cultural commemorations continue around the country. Another celebration is scheduled to take place in Columbia, South Carolina on March 30th.

Photo Credit: Jeremiah Drummond.

Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette to Serve as Chair of the Republican Lieutenant Governor Association (RGLA) in 2024

Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette to Serve as Chair of the Republican Lieutenant Governor Association (RGLA) in 2024

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: RSLC Press
press@rslc.gop

RLGA Announces 2024 Executive Committee

WASHINGTON, D.C. –– The Republican Lieutenant Governors Association (RLGA), a caucus of the Republican State Leadership Committee, today announced its 2024 Executive Committee. The announcement follows an election cycle in which the organization showed tremendous success electing Republican lieutenant governors. In 2022, the RSLC made a significant $300,000 investment to help elect Stavros Anthony in Nevada in a stunning upset to flip that seat from Democrat to Republican. In 2023, the RSLC went undefeated in protecting our incumbent Lieutenant Governors, and two of our incumbents were the highest vote getters on the ballot in their respective states, including Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser, and Mississippi Lieutenant Governor Delbert Hosemann.

The RSLC will look to build on these achievements in 2024, as there will be 9 lieutenant governors races on the ballot.

“I am grateful to have the support of my fellow Republican Lieutenant Governors as I take on this critical position as Chair of the RLGA alongside the entire executive committee,” said South Carolina Lieutenant Governor and RLGA Chair Pamela Evette. “As Chair of the RLGA in 2024, it is imperative that we remain steadfast in our commitment to electing conservative leaders who will push back on the devastating policies coming out of Washington D.C. from Joe Biden and his allies.”

“The American people are looking at state Republican leaders to lead while the federal government continues to fail them, so during this pivotal presidential election cycle, our work as Republican leaders in the states has become more important than ever before,” said Utah Lieutenant Governor and RLGA Vice Chair Deidre Henderson. “We must work together in lockstep as we press forward to elect more Republican Lieutenant Governors nationwide.”

“In 2024, the RLGA is laser focused on protecting all of our Lieutenant Governors against the onslaught of money pouring in from national outside liberal spending groups in key battleground states across the country,” said Nevada Lieutenant Governor and RLGA Finance Chair Stavros Anthony. “I cannot wait to roll up my sleeves and get to work with the executive team at the RLGA, where we will continue to ensure that we raise more money than ever to maintain our high rate of success this November.”

Republican Lieutenant Governors Association Executive Committee

  • South Carolina Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette, Chair
  • Utah Lieutenant Governor Deidre Henderson, Vice Chair
  • Nevada Lieutenant Governor Stavros Anthony, Finance Chair
  • Florida Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez, Executive Committee
  • Indiana Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch, Executive Committee
  • Iowa Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg, Executive Committee
  • Ohio Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted, Executive Committee
  • Oklahoma Lieutenant Governor Matt Pinnell, Executive Committee

ABOUT RLGA
One of four caucuses under RSLC’s leadership, the Republican Lieutenant Governors Association (RLGA) is the only national organization dedicated to electing Republicans to the offices of lieutenant governor. Across the country, lieutenant governors serve as a state’s second-in-command, performing critical tasks such as overseeing small business recruitment, leading economic development, administering fair elections, maintaining homeland security, and managing disaster recovery. These experiences often prepare our lieutenant governors for higher office, as 10 out of 27 Republican governors previously served as lieutenant governors.

ABOUT RSLC
The Republican State Leadership Committee (RSLC) is the largest organization of Republican state leaders in the country and only national committee whose mission is to recruit, train, and elect Republicans to multiple down-ballot, state-level offices. Thanks to the RSLC’s growing network of grassroots supporters in all 50 states, the committee helps deliver wins for Republican state legislators, lieutenant governors, secretaries of state, agriculture officials, and state judges across the country.

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Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette speaks Clarendon County GOP meeting

Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette speaks Clarendon County GOP meeting

by Melissa McCoy, Manning Live — originally posted on 2/18/2024

On February 8 th , the Clarendon County Republican Party (CCGOP) met for its regularly scheduled monthly meeting. The meeting was opened with prayer and CCGOP Chairman Moye Graham gave remarks and led the Pledge of Allegiance. Next, members recited the Republican Creed, led by Cindy Risher from the Executive Committee. June Brailsford, Treasurer, gave her report and Secretary Maureen Calvo followed with an update. This month’s meeting included several special guests. House Representative

District 64 Fawn Pedalino and South Carolina Lieutenant Governor Pamela Evette were in attendance as speakers.

Pedalino gave a brief rundown about the agreement that she and State Senator Kevin Johnson had come to regarding the school board trustees election map before moving on to more recent issues. Pedalino continued, “It is an election year with a lot of things to do, mostly focusing right now on our children, which I think is important.”

Pedalino explained the social media regulation bill and that it mandates age verification, requires parental consent, and provider/parental accounts. The intended goal is to take proactive steps to protect youth from potentially harmful online content. From there, Pedalino said that the committee went further and took the initiative to create the Child Online Safety Act. The COSA is designed to protect children from inappropriate online content such as pornographic material. “Most of you know it is everywhere and they can literally just login. Some of the kids already know what a VPN is and they can bypass it, but the goal was to stop as many as we could,” Pedalino noted.

The Help Not Harm bill, Pedalino describes, fights gender transition procedures to anyone under the age of 18. That would include surgeries as well as puberty blockers and hormone therapy. It restricts South Carolina Medicaid from covering these procedures for anyone under the age of 26. The bill also requires schools to notify parents that their children are making statements about being transgender as well as
holding doctors criminally accountable if they perform these procedures. “I was on this one the whole way, from beginning to end. I was on the committee,” Pedalino touted.

Another bill that passed recently was the maximum potential unemployment benefit bill. “Our state’s unemployment benefits seem to benefit our workforce businesses’ economy,“ Pedalino explained, “essentially the number of our number of weeks of unemployment benefits that a claimant may receive will be tied to the economic conditions.” She then gave the example that when jobs are readily available,
indicating a strong economy, benefits would be limited in an effort to encourage employment and workforce participation. 

Lastly, Pedalino discussed a bill that was close to her heart. “Another one we worked on, and it is sentimental to me, obviously, coming from an EMS background, [is] we created a position for fallen first responder’s survivors.”  The bill is designed to assist families of deceased first responders with benefits and support. “When you are grieving the loss of a loved one, you don’t know how to move forward. We want to be able to help with that process. It helps guide them through obtaining health insurance … and educational and financial benefits. This was something that we wanted to take to the Senate.”

After her update, Pedalino formally introduced Lieutenant Governor Evette. After thanking Graham and the crowd for inviting her to the meeting, Evette began to summarize her office’s accomplishments and future goals.

Evette described how she and Governor Henry McMaster “want to bring more opportunities to South Carolina.” She reported 1.7 billion in revenue in 2022 with BMW. “That was our largest economic development announcement that we had … we were so excited only to have that record broken 30 days later when Redway did a $3.5 billion economic development.” Evette was confident in many more businesses establishing themselves in South Carolina. “Let me tell you why they’re coming. Why? Because we are a great red conservative state. Businesses want the opportunity to be able to govern their own businesses.”

Next, Evette spoke regarding high school seniors, including her own, choosing technical colleges over traditional four-year universities. “You can go to one of our technical colleges here in South Carolina. You can get a really cool degree and you’ll go for two years. You will start out at $55,000 and in three years, if you prove yourself to be a good employee, which we all have to do, you can be making six figures. But the best part of that is you will have zero college debt.”

Evette touched on school choice and voter ID before moving on the national election. “I’m very passionate about school choice. I want every parent to be able to guide where their children go to school.

“We want fair elections. And here in South Carolina. We have made it easier to vote and harder to cheat. Right? There is no excuse to not show up in person you have two weeks before any election with your ID with your driver’s license or state issued ID card with your picture on it,” Evette expressed.

A loyal Trump supporter, Evette continually endorses the former president. “We have a presidential primary coming up next Saturday, the 24th , and I’m here to tell you, just to let the cat out of the bag, I’ve been supporting President Trump since 2015. I’ve been supporting him because he brings a sense of strength, peace through strength.”

Evette closed her speech for the evening with a quick question and answer session. A member from the CCGOP took the opportunity to ask the Lt. Governor if she planned to “follow Governor McMaster.”

Evette replied, “Right now, I’m just working really hard to get President Trump elected [and] to make sure we take back the Senate … I really love what I do. I can’t tell you what an honor it is to serve as your lieutenant governor.” She then left the crowd with a simple, “Look for me. I’m not going to be run off.”

Omron Automation to bring a $9.2 million investment and 162 jobs to Spartanburg

Omron Automation to bring a $9.2 million investment and 162 jobs to Spartanburg

Samantha Swann, Spartanburg Herald-Journal – originally posted 2/13/2024

A new automation facility is bringing more than 100 jobs and creating a $9.2 million investment at the Inland Port in Greer.

Omron Automation Americas is moving its facility from Renton, Washington, to Atlas at Inland Port Greer, located at 311 Genoble Road. The announcement was made on Feb. 8 during news conference held at Spartanburg Community College’s Spark Center SC in Duncan, located at the college’s Tyger River campus in Duncan.

Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette, Greer Mayor Rick Danner, County Councilman David Britt, and SCC President Michael Mikota joined representatives from the company to celebrate the move to Spartanburg County.

Omron Automation will join BMW, Keurig Dr. Pepper, and Milo’s Tea in making items in the county that will be used throughout the country and the world. Since starting its move, the company has used the Spark Center as a local base.

“Sometimes we get lulled into this sense that everybody does what we do, but they don’t. I’m reminded of that every time I’m with my colleagues from around the country, and I talk about all the amazing things going on here,” Evette said. “A place like we’re standing in today, a soft landing pad for businesses, that doesn’t happen everywhere, but it does happen here.”

Moving and expanding in South Carolina

Omron Automation will relocate to Greer between now and May. The facility will manufacture motion controllers and drives, machine vision, barcode readers and verification systems.

The move will coincide with an expansion of the facility’s use, which will include the creation of a Proof of Concept Center.

“This latest facility proudly is our fourteenth location in the Americas. It stands as our principal automation manufacturing location, and it joins a network of engineering design test labs (and) state-of-the-art proof of concept centers spanning from coast to coast,” President and CEO of Omron Automation Americas Robb Black said. “This site will include manufacturing, warehousing, and a new state-of-the-art automation Proof of Concept Center (that) will demonstrate the latest innovations in sensing control, safety, vision, motion and robotics.”

Chairman and CEO of Omron Management Center of America Nigel Blakeway said Greer was chosen after a comprehensive search of 85 cities.

“Spartanburg County stood out as an outstanding location because of the great access we have to a world-class workforce and the community partners that are already established here,” Blakeway said.

Now hiring: 100 + new jobs in manufacturing

The company is creating 162 jobs at the Inland Port Greer facility.

Omron Automation offers paid holidays, community service leave, a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental, vision, disability and life insurance, a 401(k) with a 4% company match and performance-based bonuses to employees.

They are currently hiring for the Greer facility.

Samantha Swann covers city news, development and culture in Spartanburg. She is a University of South Carolina Upstate and Greenville Technical College alumna. Contact her at sswann@shj.com or on Instagram at @sam_on_spartanburg.

Lt. Gov. tours Volvo as plant gets ready to produce only electric vehicles

Lt. Gov. tours Volvo as plant gets ready to produce only electric vehicles

By Ann McGill originally published by Live 5 WCSC on Jan 25, 2024.

RIDGEVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) – Big changes are coming to the Volvo manufacturing plant in Ridgeville.

The automaker says just six years from now, the Swedish carmaker will go fully electric.

Starting in 2030, the company will kick gas-powered engines to the curb and only manufacture electric vehicles.

The company invited one of the state’s top officials to the Lowcountry to check out the plant as it prepares to move forward.

Lt. Governor Pamela Evette got full access to the assembly plant that is working to attract the next generation of manufacturing employees.

She even took part in a training exercise designed for new workers.

“This really gets continuity you know. There’s this manual you look at, you do it. The same thing everybody is trained on the same way. I think this is great. I think this is why it’s so important to get our kids involved in our robotics and STEM programs. Cause Legos are a huge part of that dexterity, that creativity,” Evette said.

Volvo is working with ReadySC on a new program to recruit students even before they graduate high school to help them get ready for that 2030 deadline. The Accelerator Program is working with seniors at Woodland, Ashley Ridge, Cross and Stall High Schools.

The company currently employs 2,000 people and is working to bring 1,300 more on board to staff a second shift as it prepares to roll out the all-electric EX90 SUV starting this summer.

There are two application events happening soon. The first one is on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Ridgeville at the Ridgeville Community Center people can fill out applications.

There’s another one happening Tuesday in Moncks Corner at the Moncks Corner Library from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

SC Lt. Gov visits Bamberg discussing economic development, rural communities

SC Lt. Gov visits Bamberg discussing economic development, rural communities

By Shawn Cabbagestalk, Originally Posted Jan 17, 2024 by WJBF News Channel 6

BAMBERG, S.C. (WJBF) – South Carolina Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette visiting Bamberg, S.C. It was one of many stops focusing on economic development and rural communities. “We know when companies come to rural communities, it, it changes everything for a town and a county and a city,” South Carolina Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette said.

In the aftermath of last week’s E-F 2 tornado, Lt. Gov. Pam Evette did not tour the damage. Instead, she toured Phoenix Specialty Manufacturing to highlight economic prospects in the area. Our cameras were not allowed inside for security reasons. “I met Phoenix when they were up in Greenville. They won a manufacturing award. So I said, I’d love to come down and see what you’re doing. So that’s what’s brought me here today, to become a better salesman for our state,” she added.

During the strategic tour, she highlighted the transformative impact of industrial development in rural areas and its positive effects. “When somebody makes an investment in our small communities, little by little all kinds of things start to change,” she said. “Grocery stores start to look at coming here, strip malls start to pop up. Builders get excited about building homes in those areas.”

Her vision extends beyond immediate challenges, addressing healthcare concerns and emphasizing the need for infrastructure development, including broadband access. “As other companies see the exciting growth that happens and how communities, really make them part of everything that’s happening, we know that that kind of news is very infectious,” she shared. “South Carolina is where everybody’s looking to grow and we’re looking to show ’em the success in these areas.”

Lt. Gov. Evette plans to visit the tornado-hit area to assess the damage, collaborating with South Carolina EMD to coordinate federal assistance. “They’re waiting word, to see what kind of funding, and how what they’ll declare that incident. So we’re just kind of waiting now on the feds,” Lt. Evette said. “I’m excited to see, the rebuild down here and just how it attracts people from all over the state to come down and support, support the businesses that have been impacted.”

She also visited the TICO tractor factory in Jasper County.

S.C. Technical College system helps state grow, Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette says

S.C. Technical College system helps state grow, Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette says

By Matthew Christian, Originally published in the Aiken Standard on January 12, 2024

NORTH AUGUSTA — South Carolina’s technical education system is a big reason for the state’s economic growth, Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette said Jan. 10.

South Carolina broke its record for largest single economic development project announced twice in 2022, Evette told the women of the Steel Magnolias Republican women’s group at Southbound Smokehouse. 

BMW announced a $1.7 billion expansion of its Upstate operations, including $1 billion for the production of electric vehicles in Spartanburg and $700 million to build a battery assembly plant in Woodruff. 

Redwood Materials announced plans to construct a $3.5 billion plant in Berkeley County that will build electric vehicle parts. 

The Census Bureau recently announced that South Carolina led the nation in population growth percentage from 2022-2023. 

“We keep growing because we are so blessed with an amazing technical college system,” Evette said. “We can create the workforce of tomorrow.” 

South Carolina’s technical college system includes 16 schools serving different areas of the state. Aiken County is served by Aiken Technical College. 

Evette added her middle son, Joey, chose to attend Greenville Technical College. 

The Evettes live north of Greenville in Travelers Rest. 

Evette said Joey played lacrosse in high school, and her friends would ask her about Joey’s college plans at the games. She said Joey was the smartest of her three children but didn’t want to be in school anymore. 

“Oh my God, he didn’t get into Clemson,” Evette remembers her friends asking. “It really dawned on me how everyone viewed our technical college system as almost a second-tier option.” 

Most people don’t realize there are good careers for graduates of a technical college, Evette continued.

She added someone with a mechatronics degree — design and analysis of sensors and actuators — can make $55,000 per year and, if that person is a good employee, six figures three years after graduation.

The best part, Evette continued, is that graduates will have zero college debt. 

Evette said she tours businesses around the state — she visited Aiken’s AGY plant in 2023 — and speaks to groups of Republicans. She said she is often told by businesses that employees need soft skills and by parents that children need to learn fiscal responsibility. 

“Really all we need to do is get our kids working again,” Evette said. 

She added youth employment is as low as it’s been. 

“Kids will learn soft skills in that first job,” Evette continued. “You can’t teach fiscal responsibility to someone who’s never had a job. They don’t know what they’re giving up to earn a dollar.” 

Evette said she’s started a statewide campaign to encourage parents to let their children get afterschool jobs