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New Approaches to Workforce Development


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During the 2019 NADO Annual Training Conference (October 19 - 22 in Reno, NV), Rick Green shared information on workforce development through training programs for in-demand positions.

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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New Approaches to Workforce Development

  1. 1. Ready to Roll A Partnership for Rural Job Creation
  2. 2. ​Effective Dates of Motor Fuel User Fee Increases User Fee Per Gallon Prior to July 1, 2017 $0.16 July 1, 2017 – June 30, 2018 $0.18 July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019 $0.20 July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2020 $0.22 July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021 $0.24 July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022 $0.26 July 1, 2022 $0.28
  3. 3. Miles of Public Road Ownership, 2013 SC 41,396 Fourth Highest GA 17,926 FL 12,099 NY 15,034 PA 39,787 TX 80,323
  4. 4. South Carolina’s transportation budget would increase from approximately $100 million in 2016 to around $800 million in annual revenue by 2024
  5. 5. • A shortage of skilled workers was impacting the ability to complete contracts on time and within budget • Overtime erodes profits and scheduling delays affected cash flow • There was the ability to secure more contracts than ever before • But the lack of skilled workers could hold the company back
  6. 6. • USCOG workforce development staff organized a focus group meeting and surveyed local road construction industry leaders who identified a shortage of workers in the transportation industry • There is a need for drivers to pick up cargo from the port, move materials in and between factories and make deliveries to customers • Between 60 and 70 percent of their current commercial drivers are 50 and over and approaching retirement age
  7. 7. • No public or private truck driver training offered in the Upper Savannah workforce region • Those interested in training would need to go 60 miles or more one-way and be put on a long waiting list
  8. 8. The SC Workforce Development Board named Piedmont Technical College the lead agency and training provider for a $355,363 grant project, titled “Ready to Roll,” designed to increase the state’s workforce for highway construction and related sectors.
  9. 9. • The grant is funding training equipment, scholarships for the students and other operating expenses. The Ready to Roll Project offers short-term (two months or less) training to help individuals start a career in the road construction industry or as a commercial truck driver. • The Ready to Roll Project would not only provide driver training but also online certification from the SC Asphalt Pavement Association. Also included in the classroom training are job preparation and work ethic skills including resume writing, how to fill out applications, how to answer interview questions, professionalism, time management, etc. • Tuition for the class is $3,995, all of which is covered by the grant. Students only incur a $25 out-of-pocket fee for background screening.
  10. 10. Obstacles and Challenges • Grant funded one truck and one trailer • Day and evening classes • Donated trucks or trucks sold to the PTC Foundation • N.W. White, a company which provides gravel to the construction industry, provided land. Satterfield Construction Company paved the practice field.
  11. 11. Collaboration • While Piedmont Technical College was selected as the lead applicant, Upper Savannah COG identified the workforce training needs, prepared the grant application, and administers the Ready to Roll Project. • Other key partners include the SC Asphalt Pavement Association, the SC Works System, other local companies and the SC Department of Transportation. • An USCOG workforce development specialist ensures that the person who is interested in the training qualifies for Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act (WIOA) benefits and is properly screened. The pre-enrollment screening includes a drug test, physical exam and WorkKeys and WIN Career Readiness assessment tests to identify their skills. • Upper Savannah staff will work to identify and refer to remediation resources. That can include remediation courses to improve grades or drug abuse centers for failed drug tests.
  12. 12. • The project started in the fall of 2018. In the first year, 41 have received Class A (tractor trailer) or Class B (dump truck) certification and are now working and earning a living wage with benefits. Piedmont Technical College has added trucks to train more people and expects to train 100 by the end of the project • One strategy is to make the training eligible for Pell Grants. If it is eligible for lottery funding and Pell grants, then a low- income individual can get financial aid that would pay for future training
  13. 13. For more information, contact: Upper Savannah COG Workforce Development Director Ann Skinner 864-941-8050 or; SC Works Specialist Ashley Guy at 864-227-7044 or