Published July 13, 2010
The funds come from a $3.8 million grant to MDC, a North Carolina-based nonprofit organization focused on improving educational and economic opportunities in the South. That grant, awarded in January, was part of $150 million authorized in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act via the U.S. Department of Labor’s “Pathways Out of Poverty” program.
The MDC program, called “Career Pathways for a Green South” is geared toward helping low-income and disadvantaged people train for jobs in the emerging green economy. It is being implemented at four community colleges in the Carolinas and Virginia: Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, Trident Tech, Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College and Mountain Empire Community College in Norton, Va.
“This grant will open the door to new green careers for people who need retraining to find employment,” said Trident Tech President Mary Thornley.
Trident will use the grant to offer weatherization training to 200 unemployed and underemployed people free of charge beginning this month. Program participants will also be able to earn industry-recognized credentials such as core certifications from the National Center for Construction Education and Research and green associate certification in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.
The Sustainability Institute will be responsible for the recruiting and placement of program participants and certification of program graduates. The Trident One Stop will support the recruitment and assessment activities of the project. MDC staff members will provide coaching to develop recruitment, training and job placement strategies.
“Green-related training will lead to career opportunities in one of the most rapidly expanding areas to emerge in the new economy. This training will provide the skills necessary to prepare trainees for those careers,” said Paul Connerty, executive director of Trident Workforce Investment Board.
All of the program’s funding comes from federal sources.
To apply to enter the training program, contact the Sustainability Institute at 843-529-3421.