Volkswagen Group of America, Chattanooga Operations, LLC, today identified The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in the company’s five-year, $5.28 million philanthropic commitment designed to serve as a catalyst for educational enrichment in the state of Tennessee. During the next five years, the company’s “Partners in Education” program will provide $1 million for UTC.

“We are employers, but we are also neighbors. That means pitching in and doing our part to make life better for the entire community,” said Dr. Neumann. “Our corporate philosophy demands that it is not enough to merely have an interest in education. We have an obligation to turn interest into action. If we’re going to create first-rate minds, we have to create first-rate schools.”

“Our $5.28 million, five-year education program is a comprehensive project that will serve as a catalyst for improvement,” said Fischer. “Our program will benefit students from kindergarten through high school; college undergraduates and graduate students; and scholars and researchers at the state’s premier research institutions.”

The partnership between Volkswagen and UTC will support the new Volkswagen Competitive Challenge fund, giving financial support to students for team projects, as well as support for faculty research, travel, recruitment and outreach. Funding at UTC will focus particularly on engineering, international studies, and computer and environmental science.

“Our entire community has been energized by the announcement that Volkswagen is coming to Chattanooga, and we at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga are proud to have been involved in the recruitment effort,” said UTC Chancellor Roger Brown. “In the short time since the announcement, Volkswagen has shown a commitment to being a true corporate neighbor and partner in this community. The establishment of the Volkswagen Competitive Challenge Fund at UTC demonstrates Volkswagen’s belief in education, and we are very appreciative for this opportunity for our faculty and students.”

In addition to UTC, Volkswagen’s “Partners in Education” program will also provide funding for Fisk University, Hamilton County Public Schools, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Tennessee State University (TSU), The University of Memphis (U of M), and The University of Tennessee – Knoxville (UTK). The program will also leverage and support the Volkswagen Group’s relationship with Chattanooga State Community College.

About Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.

Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, the world’s third largest automaker and the largest carmaker in Europe. It houses the U.S. operations of a worldwide family of distinguished and exciting brands including Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini and Volkswagen, as well as VW Credit, Inc. Founded in 1955, the company’s headquarters are in Herndon, Virginia.

The company has approximately 2,500 employees in the United States and sells its vehicles through an 800-strong dealer network. With increasing popularity for its brands in the U.S., the company has set the goal of reaching one million car sales in the country by 2018.

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