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Summer 2022 Update

The Be Pro Be Proud SC Mobile Workshop has just completed its second full year of tour stops, a feat made all the more impressive considering it began its mission in the midst of the national COVID crisis.

But the BPBPSC Mobile Workshop was not the only creative effort geared toward SC children to come out of the pandemic. Shawn Goins, a youth pastor at The Refuge in Murrells Inlet, SC, saw a need and worked to fill it by creating an alter-ego, Handyman Hal. His church needed videos to send out on behalf of the children's ministry during the time when they could not meet in person; he was working in home construction and as a handyman at the time, in addition to his pastoral duties, and felt that he could use his experiences to teach a few Sunday School lessons through video. It has since blossomed into a website with more than 150 videos and more than 59,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel. Shawn and his team reached out to the Be Pro Be Proud SC staff to request permission to feature the Mobile Workshop in one of their videos while it stopped in the Charleston area; he focused on the simulators for Commercial Truck Driving, Forklift, and Heavy Equipment. While the videos are marketed to children in preschool, he is making the Skilled Trades cool and providing information to their parents at the same time. Thank you, Handyman Hal!

Watch the video HERE.

Be Pro Be Proud Launches New Website

Since the Summer of 2020, the Be Pro Be Proud parent organization -- which currently serves five states and expects several more to join soon -- has worked with Flex360 on the design and development of a new website to serve as a central hub of Be Pro Be Proud operations. In May, this web presence was launched in the form of a PHP Multisite, with each state getting its own individual website, allowing member states to message students and stakeholders, track tour data and visualize upcoming tour stop locations.

Aside from the value the new site adds to Be Pro Be Proud, it also adds immense value to all partners. Partners will soon be able to log in, access student information and message or email students in their state directly. Partners will also be able to see student interests, location, graduation year and many other aspects of their profiles. Students, when they register with the Join the Movement program, agree to being contacted by BPBP and its Affiliated Partners. 

Click here to see the updated Be Pro Be Proud SC website. On the Home Page, note the Participation Numbers -- these will be updated after each tour stop. We will be able to see our impact in real time! As you explore the rest of the site, here is some of what you will be able to see:  our valued business and government partners around the state, listed under the Our Team tab; the latest happenings in BPBP under the News tab; the most up-to-date job openings from our Affiliated Partners under the Find Jobs tab; training programs for all the highlighted professions under the Find Training tab; and scholarship and apprenticeship info under the Resource Center tab.
Contact SuzAnne at to suggest any additions or corrections to the site -- this is a group effort and a work in progress!

 Specialty Vehicle Operator

 If you visit the Mobile Workshop during the year, more likely than not you will be greeted by Jon's smiling face. He is a pro at what he does, which means that he takes his responsibility with Be Pro Be Proud personally.
 As he describes it, "I take pride in how I represent any tour that I am on. I do that through my rapport with the clients and how I present myself; I also ensure the Tractor and Trailer are in top-notch condition before leaving for any destination."
 Jon is being modest in his assessment, however -- he is invested in the mission of Be Pro Be Proud SC and demonstrates this with every tour stop he makes. He speaks from the heart to the students at each stop and works tirelessly to make sure that every participant has a chance to experience the Mobile Workshop in full and that every teacher is prepared to provide the follow-up that any students might request.
 He is currently training two new operators to join him on the 2022-23 Be Pro Be Proud Tour that will begin again in earnest in mid-August. Hopefully he has had a chance to enjoy his down time with family and friends on the links or on the lake for a few weeks this summer -- life on the road with the Mobile Workshop is rewarding, for sure, but can be exhausting, too.

Thank you, Jon, for your dedication to the Be Pro Be Proud mission!

Be Pro Be Proud National Conference

The first Be Pro Be Proud National Conference was held from June 28 through June 30 in Bentonville, Arkansas, to address matters related to Be Pro Be Proud and each of its regional partners. The National Conference included breakout sessions for Be Pro Be Proud organizational verticals, as well as keynote addresses by Senator John Boozman, Congressman French Hill (AR-2), Congresswoman Virginia Foxx (NC-5), Arkansas State Senator Jane English, and Arkansas Office of Skills Development Director Cody Waits, among others.   

Attendees at the National Conference represented the key players that make Be Pro Be Proud successful:  leaders of operational and prospective Be Pro Be Proud state efforts; vendors from the construction, manufacturing, transportation, and utilities sectors; plus leaders in local, state and federal workforce development representing nine states.
 Together, Be Pro Be Proud's ever-expanding private-public partnerships will modernize the perceptions surrounding technical careers and address the growing generational skills gap impacting industry across the nation.

SC Truck Driving Championships

One of the facets of the Be Pro Be Proud SC mission is to "showcase current skilled professionals’ true vocational pride." What better way to highlight the important knowledge and skill that Commercial Truck Drivers possess than to schedule a competition?
 At the end of April, truck drivers from all over South Carolina met in Columbia to compete for the chance to participate in the National Truck Driving Championships that will be held in Indianapolis in August.
 Sixty-one of the state’s safest and most skilled drivers competed in one of nine classes, from smaller step vans all the way to double trailers, with the winner in each class representing South Carolina at the National TDC. The competition consisted of the following events:
 • A 50-question, multiple choice written test covering industry facts and regulations;
 • A pre-trip inspection (timed), where the driver had to identify as many as possible of 10 planted defects; and
 • A road course consisting of six skills problems or obstacles.
 Observers to this weekend competition couldn't help but admire the level of knowledge that the drivers must have at their fingertips. Driving commercial vehicles is important and sometimes hazardous work that touches the lives of each and every citizen at some point, typically on a daily basis. The driving skills exhibited then put the exclamation point on the fact that these drivers deserve the respect and admiration of everyone on the road.
 Be Pro Be Proud SC is working hard every day to ensure that students around South Carolina understand what Commercial Truck Drivers do and to encourage participation in this industry, along with dozens of other Skilled Trades in our state. Thank you to all who support these efforts -- now let's all go Thank a Truck Driver! 

What is Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships are an "earn-while-you-learn" training model that combines structured on-the-job training, job-related education, and a scalable wage progression. These apprenticeships are a great opportunity for students to get their foot in the door before graduating high school. They also benefit companies by bringing new employees into the business early in their careers, when they are open to being trained the way YOU want them trained. 

Interested in starting an apprenticeship for YOUR company/organization? An Apprenticeship Carolina consultant will speak with you at no cost, working with you on the following steps: 

  • Understand the registered apprenticeship training model
  • Identify existing models for your occupations of interest
  • Connect you with appropriate resources to assist with your program
  • Draw up your Standards and Training & Education outline based upon your input
  • Submit your registration paperwork to the USDOL for full recognition in the National Registered Apprenticeship System
  • Assist you with program updates as your workforce needs evolve

If you would like to learn more about Apprenticeship Carolina or get an apprenticeship started for your company, please click the link below to get started and find your consultant. 

Be Pro Be Proud SC Wants YOU!

  The Be Pro Be Proud SC truck has been making tour stops around the state since September of 2020. These tour stops give students a chance to learn about the different trades and the hands-on simulators allow them to try each one out on their own.
 Partners also visit the Mobile Workshop to speak to the students about the career opportunities available locally and throughout South Carolina -- students LOVE to meet real people doing real work in these fields. Having someone there to encourage them only adds to the benefit of getting hands-on experiences with tasks they may never have been exposed to.
 After her visit to the Mobile Workshop last year, one student gushed, “I really liked the CDL truck driving simulator. I think I might want to be a truck driver!"
 Students are also encouraged to register with Join the Movement, which allows Be Pro Be Proud and its partners to communicate directly with the students on a real-time basis through text and email about the career and training opportunities available in SC in the world of Skilled Trades.
Interested in learning more about sponsorship so we can continue to thrive in making an impact on students? We would love to chat! Just fill out the sponsorship form and we will be in touch!

Let's Get Social!  

Join us on Facebook and Instagram for informational posts about Mobile Workshop visits, recent happenings in the Skilled Trades universe, and updates about BPBP partners and businesses around the state.
We are always looking for PROS to highlight on social media and in publications such as this one; do YOU know any skilled tradespeople who deserve some recognition? Email SuzAnne Smithson Driscoll at with their name and contact info (with their permission, of course!) and tell us why you believe that we -- and the world -- should know about them!

And Finally...

 Right now, America's workforce is facing a challenge. Over 23% of the current skilled professionals are at or near retirement age. But our state's workforce isn't prepared to fill the positions our retiring workers are creating.
Be Pro Be Proud is quickly growing and always looking for more people to join our efforts. If you are interested in volunteering at a Be Pro Be Proud event in your community, or if you think your company may be a good fit for a new project, please contact SuzAnne Smithson Driscoll at and we can get brainstorming!
 COMING SOON, we will also have even more opportunities available for small businesses to participate in our efforts and benefit from partnership....STAY TUNED!

A Heartfelt THANK YOU To Our Sponsors!

Thank you again for your support.
 We couldn't do any of this without YOU!
 ~ SuzAnn


An initiative led by the
Associated Industries of South Carolina Foundation (AISCF),
 Be Pro Be Proud SC is leading the movement to bring a new generation of
Pride, Progress & Professionals to South Carolina's skilled workforce.
 The AISCF is comprised of five member organizations:
the SC Trucking Association, the Home Builders Association of SC, the Forestry Association of SC, Carolinas AGC, and the SC Chamber of Commerce.

Copyright © 2022 Be Pro Be Proud SC, All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:
 2425 Devine Street
 Columbia, SC 29205