Previously on this page, we’ve pointed out that there are numerous workplace positions available in the north country but not enough people to fill them.
One problem is that individuals — particularly students — don’t see many good job prospects here. They complete their college education in New York and look for employment in other states.
Another issue is that many people lack the adequate training to fill jobs that are available. They may not know how to enter an apprenticeship program that will lead to a fulfilling career paying decent wages.
It’s long been known that choosing higher education isn’t for everyone. The Board of Cooperative Educational Services has years of experience preparing adults to work toward a variety of jobs in the trades. BOCES is incredibly valuable in New York as its helps move student through the process.
Jefferson Community College is working with Associated Builders & Contractors/Empire State Chapter to bring back another program to help individuals prepare for available positions. From May 1 to July 26, classes will be held on training for construction jobs. This program will be offered at the Lewis County JCC Education Center, 7395 East Road in Lowville.
“A 12-week, pre-apprenticeship construction training program is coming to the north country for qualified individuals free of charge thanks to a New York State Department of Labor grant and Jefferson Community College,” according to a news item published March 26 by the Watertown Daily Times. “Upon successful completion, participants will accrue 400 hours of classroom and hands-on training and two industry-recognized credentials, the OSHA 10 card for training on critical safety construction workplace topics and the National Center for Construction Education and Research certification in Level 1 Carpentry. In addition, successful candidates will have an opportunity to apply for a skilled-trade apprenticeship at the conclusion of training and/or move directly into employment in the construction sector.”
Megan A. Stadler, JCC’s associate vice president for strategic initiatives, said there is a definite demand for this type of training.
“We are excited to address the workforce shortages in our region while giving individuals the opportunity to prepare themselves for a high-demand job,” she said in the news item.
There are restrictions on participating in this program. The state has announced the criteria that applicants must meet to enter. The news item reported:
“Eligible individuals must meet the state Department of Labor Dislocated Worker definition. There are six categories of Dislocated Worker. To qualify as a Dislocated Worker, you must be ‘underemployed’ or ‘unemployed.’ Underemployed refers to a situation where you are working at a wage that is below your skill level or less than your previous job. Unemployed means you are not currently employed.”
Programs such as the one offered at the Lewis County JCC Education Center are an ideal way to introduce young adults to an excellent alternative to college — or even something else they can do while pursuing a college degree. Many high-paying trades need new workers to fill the ranks of seasoned employees who are retiring and leaving their jobs. They construct homes and office buildings all over the north country, thus creating the necessary spaces in which other people can live and work.
This program further shows the tremendous value of the Lewis County JCC Education Center. Open since 2019, it’s wonderful to have a facility where a unique program like this can be held.
Space is limited. For more information or to apply, visit wdt.me/oZuM7y. Inquiries may be directed to the JCC Workforce Development Office at 315-786-2233 or via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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