"This initiative will allow us to reach more people, specifically women and veterans, and help them launch family-supporting careers."
-Heather Winfrey, ANEW
In June 2011, SkillUp Washington was awarded $900,000 to launch a multi-partner job training initiative to help veterans, minorities and women launch careers in green construction and utilities. Seattle is one of seven sites selected to receive subgrants from Jobs for the Future (JFF), a leading nonprofit education and workforce development organization, which received $8 million from the Department of Labor.
This three-year initiative, called Washington GreenForce, marks successful collaboration between local government, labor, community-based organizations, and postsecondary institutions.The initiative involves apprenticeship and trade organizations that will recruit and prepare participants for future career opportunities and others.
How it works
Participants will go through a flexible eight-week program designed for people working in entry-level jobs who cannot afford to leave work for a full-time program. Sellen Sustainability (a division of Sellen Construction) will provide its Green Collar Workforce training to women recruited by the nonprofit organization Apprenticeship and Non-Traditional Employment for Women (ANEW). ANEW will also provide support services and co-enroll participants in the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) system.
Veterans in Construction Electrical (VICE) – a program that offers electrical training to veterans- will fast track veterans into the residential, low voltage (sound and communications) and commercial career tracks. The Vocational Outside Line Training Academy(VOLTA), which provides comprehensive training for experienced line workers who are advancing toward their outside electrical construction industry Journeyman status, will prepare students for line worker, power line clearance, and power ground worker positions and entrance into utilities apprenticeships. South Seattle Community College Georgetown campus will deliver accredited courses for incumbent construction workers who are looking to skill-up for green construction jobs.
Over the next five years, there will be an estimated 1,200 new and replacement jobs for electricians in the Seattle metro area. Other partners include IBEW-NECA’s apprenticeship program and the NW Line apprenticeship program.
Washington State Governor Declares April Registered Apprenticeship Awareness Month.