Fresno EOC Valley Apprenticeship Connections (VAC) is partnering with the local Building and Construction Trades Council and Fresno County Economic Development Corporation to help open a new workforce development center and pre-apprenticeship program. The Central Valley Training Center, located in Selma, is currently recruiting for its first cohort and will assist with the workforce needed for the nation’s first high-speed rail project.
“Helping our Central Valley residents, get the resources and knowledge to be successful in the construction industry has been at the forefront of what we do,” said Amalia Martinez, Valley Apprenticeship Connections Assistant Director. “I’m excited about the opening of this new center because not only does it bring more opportunities for our residents, but it also allows our students to be a part of a historic project.”
The new training center was made possible by the California High-Speed Rail Authority and the City of Selma to fulfill the local workforce’s needs. Upon completion, Central Valley residents, including veterans, at-risk adults, minority and low-income communities, living in Fresno, Kings, Tulare, Kern, Madera, and Merced counties, will have the tools and experience needed for a career in the construction industry.
“Our workforce is growing and moving forward. Every trade is increasing their apprenticeship programs because people are asking for these opportunities,” said Chuck Riojas, Executive Director of the Fresno, Madera, Tulare, Kings Building Trades Council. “The Central Valley Training Center is part of it. This effort is a convergence of momentum happening across the state, within all trades and labor unions, and high-speed rail helps make it a reality in the Central Valley.”
This program includes 16 weeks of classroom instruction, industry-specific certifications, and job placement assistance while adhering to social distancing guidelines to ensure health and safety remain at the forefront. VAC will provide applicant screening, orientation, assessment services, and facilitate its Thinking for Change curriculum. Students will leave with improved soft skills, communication, and know-how to manage conflict better.
“The EDC has been working on this project for many years and we are excited that it has finally come to fruition,” said Lee Ann Eager, President/CEO of Fresno County EDC. “The City of Selma has been an amazing partner. We look forward to many more years of helping our community grow and prosper together through economic and workforce development.”
Central Valley Training Center will help individuals seek the following positions: bricklayer, carpenter, cement mason, electrician, ironworker, operating engineer, painter and allied trade, plumber and pipefitter, roofer/waterproofer, sheet metal worker, and teamster.
If you or someone you know is interested in the program, please visit the Central Valley Training Center online. Class begins as soon as October 5, 2020.