College's trucker training program benefits from $500,000 donation

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Itawamba Community College

A Mississippi community college's truck driver training program ill benefit from a major donation made by a major national furniture manufacturer.

Itawamba Community College, which has campuses in Fulton, Tupelo and Belden, recently received $500,000 from the Ashley Charitable Foundation, a non-profit organization founded by Ashley Furniture Industries, LLC.

According to a statement from the college, "The funds from the Ashley Charitable Foundation will be used to further enhance infrastructure at ICC as it continues to expand its Commercial Truck Driving program with the construction of a new driving range just across the street from the Tupelo Campus. Additional phases will include the construction of a storage facility for training equipment and phase three, a state-of-the-art training lab and garage."

Ashley, which is based in Arcadia, Wisconsin, operates one of the largest private trucking fleets in the U.S. Its Ashley Distribution Services has some 1,943 trucks and 1,250 drivers.

Ashley Furniture Industries has had a strong presence in Mississippi since 1994, operating facilities in Ecru, Ripley, Verona, and Saltillo. Over the years, the Ecru facility has grown to become the largest upholstery plant in the country, according to the company, while the Saltillo operations are the largest mattress plant in the U.S.

The company has more than 20,000 stores in 160 countries, and over 30 million square feet of manufacturing space around the world.