RVCC Honors John Olson, Whelen Engineering, at Scholarship Dinner

River Valley Community College will be celebrating the culmination of the Envisioning A Brighter Future Year of Giving Campaign with a dinner honoring John Olson, Executive Vice President of Manufacturing at Whelen Engineering in Charlestown, on Friday, September 18, 5:30pm at the Common Man Inn & Restaurant in Claremont.  The Campaign was launched last September at the Presidential Inaugural Event and Walter R. Peterson Award Celebration, honoring Barbara J. Couch.

This year, RVCC President Alicia Harvey-Smith announced that the College will honor John Olson with the River Valley Community College Exemplary Leader and Champion of Learning Award for his continuous efforts to train and develop tomorrow’s workforce today.

Chair of the Scholarship Development Committee, Harvey Hill expressed his excitement with Olson’s selection as this year’s honoree, sharing that “John Olson’s leadership in manufacturing has significantly impacted the state of NH and is an exemplary model nationally.” 

As a River Valley Community College industry partner, Olson has been a civic leader, committed to building manufacturing and promoting career opportunities and jobs in New Hampshire for many years. He is a University of New Hampshire graduate, served in the US Coast Guard, and began his career in 1958 at Whelen Engineering, where he was their first full time employee. Olson was named president in 1976, a position he held until September 1, 2015.

NH Business Review described Olson as the leader of “one of the state's most successful and innovative manufacturing companies”. The article notes that Whelen Engineering has not merely survived, but has dramatically expanded while staying true to its niche and employing a significant workforce.

Dr. Harvey-Smith said, “John is a strong advocate for manufacturing and investing in technology.  His commitment to practical education and creating pathways for students from high school to education, training and lucrative careers is well known. I could not think of a finer honoree and hope that the community will come out and enjoy this special event in his honor.”

Please join River Valley Community College on Friday, September 18, 5:30 pm at the Common Man Inn & Restaurant in Claremont for an evening of celebration.  Money raised from this event will go towards student scholarships. Seats are available for $100. For more information about the campaign, tickets for the dinner, or to make a donation, email Jillian E. Davis, Executive Assistant to the President, at jedavis@ccsnh.edu.

River Valley Community College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges’ Commission on Institutions of Higher Education and is one of seven colleges in the Community College System of New Hampshire. RVCC offers thirty-nine associate degree and certificate programs in Claremont, Keene, On-line and opening in fall 2016 in Lebanon.  Financial Aid and Scholarships are available to those who qualify. Visit www.rivervalley.edu to learn more and to make your scholarship gift.  Funds will benefit River Valley Community College Scholarships through the Community College of NH Foundation. The Community Colleges of New Hampshire Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization.


At a glance

News & Events

Contact Us

(603) 542-7744
1 College Place
Claremont, NH 03743


eStart WorkReadyNH