CCP opens energy jobs training center

Stephen M. Curtis, president of Community College of Philadelphia, and Pennsylvania Labor & Industry Secretary Julia Hearthway announced the new Energy Training Center. CCP and Labor & Industry are collaborating on tools and training to help move Philadelphians into available jobs that pay family-sustaining wages. — SUBMITTED BY COMMUNITY COLLEGE OF PHILADELPHIA

The Community College of Philadelphia is now home to a new Energy Training Center that will focus on expanding the talent pipeline.

The center, led by the CCP’s Corporate Solutions workforce development team, is designed to serve as an education and training partner for the energy sector in the Philadelphia region, which includes refineries and other companies in the oil, gas, water and renewable energy industries.

“The goal is to support the supply chain now serving energy companies, and to offer specialized career training that connects residents to emerging career paths,” CCP President Stephen Curtis said during a press conference held Thursday morning at the college’s Center for Business and Industry.

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“The center will bring together post-secondary and higher education and corporate partners in an effort to identify career specific and workforce training education options that are needed to increase productivity and business competitiveness.”

The new energy training center will offer a number of degree and certificate programs by the upcoming spring semester which begins in January 2013. For example, the building science associate in Applied Science degree will prepare students for a career in the energy conservation industry for jobs such as energy auditor, renewable energy installer and computer energy modeler.

The center is the result of a partnership between Pennsylvania Department Labor & Industry and CCP. The college is using workforce data provided by Sue Mukherjee, director of the Pennsylvania L&I Center for Workforce Information and Analysis to assess which courses, certificates and academic degrees are most likely to meet the current needs of the energy supply chain and pay family-sustaining wages.

Pennsylvania is positioned as an energy hub, generating a growing demand for highly skilled workers to work in the sector and for the supply chain that serves it.

“With the promise of the continued success of the Marcellus Shale region and the industries that it spawns, the hope for an expanded energy sector with the possible Shale Net in Southwestern Pennsylvania and the resurgence of the refineries here in the Southeast — Pennsylvania, in particular Philadelphia — stands to continue to benefit from the energy industry,” said Pennsylvania L&I Secretary Julia Hearthway.

She said job opportunities exist in Philadelphia for energy auditors, extraction workers and construction supervisors.

The center marks the second collaboration this year between the college and Gov. Corbett’s administration. In October, the college became the first pilot site for Pennsylvania Statewide Career Coach, on online career-exploratory tool that connects high school graduates and job seekers to up and coming careers and to the colleges and universities that offer those degree programs. Pennsylvania Career Coach enables students to compare occupations, review salaries and use a tool to assess whether they possess interest and skill sets required to succeed in specific careers.

The energy training center was announced during a supply chain and workforce development seminar hosted by CCP and the Marcellus Shale Coalition. The seminar was geared toward educating area small and mid-sized businesses about opportunities along the Marcellus Mutipler supply chain.

During the press conference, the coalition foundation announced a $15,000 donation to CCP’s energy center.

While the major energy production hubs are in Western Pennsylvania, the Southeast region is home to the largest refinery on the East Coast and an expanding sector of businesses who work in the energy industry supply chain.

More than 235,000 Pennsylvanians are employed directly and indirectly within the Marcellus Shale related industries. More than 70 percent of the Marcellus Shale direct jobs are being filled by Pennsylvanians.

 

Contact staff writer Ayana Jones at (215) 893-5747 or ajones@phillytrib.com.

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