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Morgan Hill
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June 3, 2023

Rotary Club offers grants for skilled labor professionals

Deadline for first round of applications is March 15

The Rotary Club of Morgan Hill has started a new grant program that offers up to $1,000 to individuals who are seeking a career in the skilled trades.

The Darren Dean Vocational Education Grant is named after a late Morgan Hill painting contractor who “bridged gaps between his profession, community service and community leader,” reads a press release from the Rotary Club of Morgan Hill.

“The Rotary Club of Morgan Hill is excited to honor those that will play a pivotal role in creating a better life for our community through skilled labor,” reads the press release. “Skilled labor refers to workers who perform hands-on work and possess abilities, training and safety-minded expertise within their industry. They bring proven experience and knowledge to job sites and construction businesses.”

Rotary Club aims to reward those involved in the “trades” because they “build homes for our families, structures for our profession and transform the ordinary into the magical.”

Dean, the grant program’s namesake, was an entrepreneur who ran a successful business, the press release says. He touched many lives in Morgan Hill, serving as a mentor and providing opportunities for others to change their lives. “From the traditional trades like construction, to those that equally impact others, like music, cosmetology and culinary arts, Darren inspired many to pursue their passion,” says the Rotary Club’s press release.

Grants of $250 to $1,000 will be awarded to applicants who qualify. Funds can be used for education and training, as well as tools and supplies. Those interested can apply for the first round of grants through March 15, 2021. To apply and to find out more information, visit the Rotary Club of Morgan Hill’s website at, or click here.

The Rotary Club’s goal is to help eliminate the financial hurdles for those looking to enter the skilled labor professions and, in turn, improve the community.

“The importance of skilled labor cannot be overstated; we are experiencing a crumbling infrastructure, a disappearance of vocational education in our public schools, and an ever-widening skills gap,” says the press release. “At times, members of this skilled labor community demonstrate not only their importance but represent the trades as a whole being a necessary component of our lives.”

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