As today’s industries restructure, streamline and computerize their functions to remain competitive, many workers are finding themselves not only unemployed by unemployable. Faced with huge uncertainties, these individuals can benefit from the Project Skill-Up program offered through Continuing Education at Sampson Community College.
The Project Skill-Up Program targets those interested in skills training and looking to upgrade or obtain new skills. The goal is to help individuals that have been adversely impacted by the changes in the tobacco industry as well as provide skills assessment and training, and when available, provide financial assistance to help students meet their educational goals.
Alonza Royal, Human Resources Development Coordinator at SCC, spearheads this initiative, and says SCC is a viable option for displaced workers looking for educational and training opportunities. “With an ever changing workforce, there is always room to upgrade skills, and I hope those who are unemployed or underemployed will take advantage of this program that will help them become more marketable in the workforce.”
Since the inception of Project Skill-Up at SCC in 2009, approximately 105 students have taken advantage of this opportunity, and the numbers are still growing. “This is an appealing offer for students, because they don’t have to take the traditional route anymore. With a wide variety of flexible online, day and evening classes, individuals are able to customize their education around their schedules,” adds Royal.
In addition to training and upgrading skills that will put them back into the workforce, Project Skill-Up also teaches participants the importance of optimism, positive choices and rewarding expectations. According to Royal, this is another factor which makes the initiative beneficial for not only participants, but the local community as well. “We have a huge pool of ‘home grown’ applicants who utilize the program to upgrade their skill set, and usually return the investment of education back into local business and industry. It’s truly a win-win collaboration.”
The Project Skill-Up initiative is funded by the Tobacco Trust Fund Commission. For more information, contact Alonza Royal at 592-7176, ext. 4014.