By Jaimason Thomas – Collegiate Staff
Tonight a graduation ceremony will be held for Grand Rapids Community College job training students. The ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. at the Tassell M-TEC center, located at 622 Godfrey Avenue. Eighty students will be recognized, including 14 students who participated in a pilot CNC (computer numeric controlled) English as a Second Language program.
GRCC developed this program in collaboration with the Hispanic Center of West Michigan and the Literacy Center of West Michigan. The program helps ESL learners develop trade skills to obtain higher earning careers.
“I really believe the strength of this partnership was the teamwork we needed to help these students earn a higher wage job,” said John VanElst, program director.
Students will be awarded for completing one of the following programs: automotive technician, construction electrical, introduction to construction, machinist/CNC technician, residential construction, computer support technician and welding/fabrication.
The job training program has a very high success rate. Eighty seven percent of students complete the program, with 84 percent of students already placed in a position at graduation.
“We are very proud of the Winter 2016 GRCC Job Training graduating class,” said Scott Mattson, job training manager. “They have put forth an incredible effort to be in class for 34 hours per week for 18 weeks. Most of these students will be working in their chosen field soon if they are not already. This is just the beginning for the Job Training students and I’m sure we’ll see them soon and hear the success they have achieved on their journey.”