Our thanks to Michael Hazzard, Dean of Workforce Solutions at Elizabethtown Community and Technical College (ECTC) for presenting at our February facility managers meeting. This month’s meeting took place at ECTC’s Occupational Technical Building.
After enjoying a lunch provided by ECTC’s Culinary Department, attendees of the meeting learned about the ways ECTC Workforce Solutions educates, empowers, and equips the diverse members of the region to compete in a complex workforce.
During his presentation, Hazzard highlighted the need for career and technical education (CTE) programs in Kentucky, pointing out that according to the National Skills Coalition, 58 percent of jobs in the state require skills training — which entails more education than high school, but less than a four-year degree — while only 48 percent of Kentuckians have skills training beyond a high school degree.
Hazzard pointed out several of the ways ECTC Workforce Solutions works to close this gap, including customized workforce training, apprenticeships, work-based connectivity and more. Through KCTCS funding, ECTC Workforce Solutions can offset the cost of workforce initiatives by up to 75 percent. ECTC Workforce Solutions offers training in a wide variety of areas, including strategic planning, welding, electricity, advanced manufacturing, commercial driver’s license (CDL) certification and much more.
Employers interested in posting job openings on ECTC’s online job board can visit www.CollegeCentral.com/elizabethtown. For additional information, contact Career and Professional Development Services Program Coordinator Kali Buchanan at Kbuchanan0039@kctcs.edu.
ECTC Workforce Solutions’ service area includes Hardin, Meade, Breckinridge, Grayson, LaRue, Nelson, Washington, Marion, Taylor and Green counties. They work with several Hardin County-based companies, such as Altec Industries, Dow Chemical and Metalsa.
“If there’s an industry need, we’re there to help,” Hazzard said.
A new initiative for ECTC Workforce Solutions is the Enhanced Operator Program, a two-semester program designed to address the increasing need for production technicians in the area. Students in the program study blueprint reading, control charts, safety and lean operations, and much more. Students also have the opportunity to take part in on-campus interviews with regional employers and complete paid on-the-job training.
ECTC Workforce Solutions also works with soldiers on Fort Knox who are transitioning out of service through the Fort Knox Army Advanced Manufacturing Career Skills Program. Through the program, soldiers are provided with free training to pursue high-demand careers, including instrumentation technician, 3D modeler, drafter assistant and more. To be eligible, soldiers must complete TAP Career Readiness Standards requirements, be within 180 days of separation or retirement and have Commander approval.
Thanks to co-funding from the Elizabethtown/Hardin County Industrial Foundation and the Kentucky Career Center – Lincoln Trail, ECTC Workforce Solutions also has a Mobile Unit, which includes 16 computer workstations, an interactive SMART board, internet connectivity, an ADA-compliant wheelchair lift and more. The Mobile Unit is used for training, testing, internet access for outreach events and other purposes.
Hazzard also touted the Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship during his presentation. The scholarship provides 60 hours of free tuition in five high-demand career fields, including healthcare, advanced manufacturing, transportation/logistics, business/IT and construction trades. The scholarship is open to Kentucky residents who do not have a college degree. Eligibility is determined by completing a FAFSA and submitting a KHEAA application.
According to Hazzard, ECTC currently has 169 different credentials eligible for the Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship. Those interested in learning more about the scholarship can visit WorkReadyKentucky.com.
Scholarship applications are currently open for the 2022 school year at ECTC, with over 45 available scholarships. The priority application deadline is Feb. 28. Scholarships at ECTC are available for anyone planning to attend the college this fall, including current students, high school seniors and adults planning to attend. To view the list of available scholarships and to apply, visit elizabethtown.kctcs.edu/scholarship.
For more information, or if interested in attending the next facility managers meeting, please contact the Elizabethtown-Hardin County Industrial Foundation at 270-737-0300.