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CCV to offer free job training~ RH September 15, 2015

CCV to offer free job training
By Lola Duffort
STAFF WRITER | September 15, 2015
MONTPELIER — The Community College of Vermont is readying to roll out a series of free job training workshops and courses at five centers across the state starting in October.

Paid for by a $2.4 million Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, the training programs are designed to provide students with industry-recognized certifications in high-demand, high-wage sectors.

Developed with input from Vermont employers, the courses will focus on manufacturing, technology and health care, CCV Workforce Education director Penne Lynch said, and will include the opportunity to take certification exams.

CCV’s new workforce training will include Introduction to Computer Science and Microcomputer Applications courses, Quickbooks workshops, preparation for the Certified Production Technician exam — a national entry-level manufacturing certification — and Career Readiness Certificate Pro courses in technology, manufacturing and health and human services.

Also funded by the grant, CCV will offer free programs in Microsoft IT Academy and the Microsoft Office Specialist Certification.

Courses will be offered at CCV centers in Winooski, Montpelier, Rutland, St. Johnsbury and Morrisville.

The courses and workshops are aimed at helping workers looking to get into a new field achieve core competencies — and also make those currently employed better at what they do.

But it’s not just technical knowledge. Many of the courses will focus on soft skills, such as conflict resolution and communication.

“(Employers) need people that can show up, get along with co-workers and learn new skills to keep up with the face of technological change,” Lynch said.

Ellison Surface Technologies has sent employees to CCV for leadership training in the past, said Lucia Boatman, HR manager with the Ohio-based thermal coating firm with operations in North Clarendon.

The company will encourage current employees to enroll in the CPT courses she said, and future applicants with that certification “will certainly stand a little taller in the crowd.”

That’s not necessarily because the CPT certification indicates that worker will be able to hit the ground running on day one — what Ellison does is too industry-specific.

It’s about showing initiative and the ability to follow through.

Completing the certificate program will indicate that the applicant, or worker seeking a promotion, has “some teeth in the game, and is serious about work,” she said.

To make the initiative sustainable past the grant’s lifetime, Lynch said the college hopes to build these courses into degree programs, and to convince employers to invest in more training for their employees.

That’s something Boatman could probably get behind. She said investing in job training is invaluable on the company side not just for the technical skills that workers pick up, but for the motivation instilled when an employee feels invested in by their employer.

“Knowing that your company is investing in you — you carry that a long way,” she said.

To learn more or register for CCV’s new programs, visit ccv.edu

lola.duffort@rutlandherald.com

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