Greenville Chamber, Greenville County Schools partner to honor LaunchGVL participants and present scholarships

May 25, 2023

LaunchGVL hosted a celebration event on Tuesday, May 23rd honoring 2022/2023 student interns and their employers. During the celebration, five students received scholarships from the Greenville Chamber Foundation and five students received scholarships from USC Upstate.

LaunchGVL is a partnership between the Greenville Chamber and Greenville County Schools to provide paid internship opportunities to Greenville County Schools students in high-demand occupations. During the 2022/2023 school year, 101 students were employed by 38 different companies, setting a program record for engagement.

“We congratulate these students on taking advantage of programs like LaunchGVL and showing great initiative by beginning their career path while in high school,” said Dr. Burke Royster, superintendent of Greenville County Schools. “We are especially thankful for partners, like the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, who come alongside the district to ensure our students have opportunities in line with the district’s Graduation Plus initiative so they can graduate college- and career-ready and prepared for their next steps in life.”

The Greenville Chamber Foundation presented five $1,000 scholarships during the ceremony, provided by grant funding from Power:Ed. Students were selected through a live drawing during the event, with any LaunchGVL student present at the event eligible. Scholarships were presented to Christina Dao, Amaziah Duncan, Gabe Hunt, Sophie Shortall, and Jose Urrutia.

USC Upstate Chancellor, Dr. Bennie Harris, shared remarks during the program and surprised five students with scholarships. Montana Arp and Kyla Webb will receive a $2200 scholarship for their freshman year. Andre Limehouse, Mary Kathryn Chandler, and Kailey Szatkowski will receive the Upstate Promise Scholarship and will not pay any tuition while attending the university as long as they remain eligible for the state Life Scholarship program.

“We are thrilled to award Promise Scholarships to these five outstanding students and welcome them to our Spartan community,” said USC Upstate Chancellor Bennie L. Harris, Ph.D. “This exemplifies our commitment to community engagement and to using every resource at our disposal to meet educational needs across the Upstate. Scholarships reduce student debt, enhance post-secondary education attainment, and empower students for a brighter future. I am proud that USC Upstate continues to shape a more inclusive and accessible educational environment.”

“Meeting the workforce needs of employers throughout the Upstate is a top priority and the LaunchGVL is vital to filling the talent pipeline,” said Carlos Phillips, Greenville Chamber President/CEO. “We thank our many strategic partners of this initiative, including USC Upstate, Greenville County Schools and the employers who engage in this important work.”

USC Upstate scholarship recipients alongside representatives from the Greenville Chamber and USC Upstate.

LaunchGVL is entering its fifth year. Since inception, 340 students have participated in LaunchGVL’s work-based learning opportunities. The program helps to actively shrink skills gaps in the Upstate and strengthen the workforce by preparing students and filling the talent pipeline. Learn more at


The Greenville Chamber, now in its 134th year of operation, is the largest business organization in Upstate South Carolina with over 1900 Investors supporting the vision of a globally competitive Upstate economy where businesses succeed and people prosper. For information, visit


Greenville County Schools is a unified, county-wide school district in Greenville, South Carolina, serving over 76,000 students in 106 schools and centers. The District’s signature initiative, Graduation Plus, focuses on providing engaging opportunities for students to earn college credit and/or industry certifications while completing their high school coursework. Students begin developing areas of interest in elementary school through related arts programs, clubs, a vibrant school-choice program, and project-based lessons that build skills in collaboration, communication, and critical thinking. Focused on building graduates aligned to the South Carolina Profile of a Graduate, Graduation Plus helps ensure GCS graduates are college and career ready and poised to be successful, contributing members of society.


The University of South Carolina Upstate is a regional comprehensive university offering more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs in the liberal arts and sciences, business, nursing, and education. Located along the I-85 corridor in Spartanburg between Greenville and Charlotte, USC Upstate is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the South’s best colleges for veterans and South Carolina’s No. 1 public regional college. It serves as a significant talent producer for the state, with 5,000 students, approximately 1,300 new graduates a year, and nearly 30,000 alumni, many of whom live and work in the state. The USC Upstate Spartans compete in 15 NCAA Division I sports as a member of the Big South Conference. For more information, visit