Pictured from left are Rodney Willoughby Jr., Kathy Brookman and Ross Nara.

Apprentice School Foundation Awards Scholarships

Published January 4, 2022

The Apprentice School Foundation awarded its fifth and sixth 2021 scholarships to Ross Nara (X11) and Rodney Willoughby Jr. (X36), respectively.

Nara is from Newport News and started his apprenticeship Oct. 4 as a shipfitter. He is a 2012 graduate of UNC Greensboro, from which he graduated with a 3.60 GPA with a Master of Science. Nara has held several positions and taught abroad. He has returned to the United States and came to The Apprentice School to learn a shipbuilding trade as he continues making the most of his opportunities.

Willoughby is from Hampton and started his apprenticeship Oct. 4 as a rigger. He is a 2016 graduate of The Master’s University & Seminary where he graduated with a GPA of 3.35 with a Master of Divinity. Rodney has served in many ways at his church and in his community. He has come to Newport News Shipbuilding following a family tradition of shipbuilding and The Apprentice School to learn a trade and continue that tradition.

This foundation recently named its scholarships in honor of Daniel Lee “Danny” Brookman, who graduated as an inside machinist apprentice in 1976. He managed craft training for The Apprentice School for over 30 years and had a passion for supporting apprentices’ growth and development to succeed throughout their career. Retiring after 43 years at NNS, he became the first secretary for The Apprentice School Foundation until his passing in 2021.

The Apprentice School Foundation provides a tax-deductible opportunity for alumni, friends and community partners of The Apprentice School to help fund scholarships, historic preservation and community service projects that carry on the school’s legacy. The foundation awards four scholarships annually. Visit The Apprentice School Foundation’s website (www.tasfd.org) for more information.