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Grant to provide broadband to Jackson County manufacturing site

OAK HILL, Ohio — The Nock & Son Company, a family-owned business involved in the refractories industry, in collaboration with JobsOhio and Ohio Southeast Economic Development, announced the company has received a JobsOhio Inclusion Grant to assist with the installation of broadband high-speed Internet to its manufacturing location in Jackson County.

The project is being assisted with a JobsOhio Inclusion Grant.

“Nock & Son is trememdously appreciative of JobsOhio’s assistance in upgrading the technology at our Oak Hill facility, and also for providing assistance for an equipment purchase for our manufacturing process,” said Stephen J. Nock, president of Nock & Son Company. “We have been proud to call Jackson County home for over 50 years.”

Nock & Son manufactures a full line of alumina ramming mixes, castables, plastics and gunning mixes and is one of the highest-wage employers in Jackson County. The $29,000 JobsOhio Inclusion Grant will be applied toward infrastructure and equipment costs associated with transitioning the company’s digital operations.

A veteran-owned business, Nock & Son was founded in 1948 and is currently operated by the third and fourth generations of the Nock family in the refractories business. A predecessor company, Nock Fire Brick, was founded in 1912 by Charles H. Nock, the great-grandfather of current president Steve Nock.

Nock and Son’s customer base consists primarily of integrated steel producers, electric furnace mini mills, foundries and alloy plants.

Center seeks public comment for strategic plan about nursing shortage

CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Center for Nursing recently announced a public comment period for its “Statewide Strategic Plan to Address the Nursing Shortage in West Virginia.”

To inform the plan’s development, the Center worked with those in nursing and health care over several months to gather input from across the state. The draft plan addresses a variety of nursing challenges related to recruitment, retention and nursing data.

“We are eager to hear from additional members of our state’s nursing community to gather further feedback on this important strategic plan,” said Gerald Bragg, chair of the Center’s board of directors, which approved the draft plan. “It is critical that we encourage all stakeholders to submit their ideas so that the plan truly reflects the nursing community as a whole — and so we can get to the heart of the most pressing issues facing nurses in West Virginia.”

The public can view the plan at and submit comments to until Feb. 28. Public comments may also be made by using the contact form available at

WVSU Business Development Training Program to hold Spring sessionINSTITUTE, W.Va. — West Virginia State University (WVSU) Extension Service is helping entrepreneurs launch their business ideas with a new session of the Opening Soon Inc. (OSI) business development training program for entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses.

The 10-week program will provide education and guidance in launching participants’ business idea into a viable product or service. Workshops will be held virtually on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., February 6 through April 10.

“Join us as we cover various topics in product development, business plans, credit and financing, social media and marketing,” said Tiffany Ellis-Williams, director of the WVSU Economic Development Center, which hosts the OSI program.

Instruction will be supplemented with technical assistance, including one-on-one business coaching and mentoring, Ellis-Williams said.

Funding for OSI is provided in part by The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation.

The course is free to attend. Registration information is available at

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