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Wednesday AM January 20th, 2009

Ser-jobs for progress and Houston Community College are in the process of recruiting candidates for green jobs training. Ed Mayberry reports.


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SER logoSER-Jobs for Progress—the national education, training and employment services organization—is hosting green jobs courses beginning next month, in partnership with HCC and Workforce Solutions.  There’s no cost for participants.  Funding is provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for education, training, employment services and job placement for 250 eligible individuals.  Nory Angel with SER-Jobs for Progress says the project targets low-income people and those who’ve been laid off.

“We’ve developed employer relationships with companies—such as Standard Renewables, Efficient Attics, Payless Insulation, GradCo Construction—that are partners on these projects.  And their purpose is to be part of the development of the curriculum, and also to participate in the training, get to know them, interview them and hire them.  Fifty per cent of the wages will be subsidized for the candidates that are hired with our employer partners.” 

Upon course completion, students receive payments for their achievements.  Classes include weatherization, solar panel installation and heating, venting and air conditioning.  Green training in Houston will soon expand, with the recent announcement of more funding.

“Last week, SER was awarded a Pathways Out of Poverty grant for $3.1 million, and we will be training 400 people.  Employers have a great incentive to get part of the wages for their hiring of our candidates.  We’ll be reimbursing wages to employers.  Employers or builders are going green, and more consumers are wanting green amenities in their home, homes that are more energy-efficient, or to convert their current homes into more energy-efficient homes, and we’re preparing the workforce to do those jobs.”

Angel says the program builds on the president’s commitment of future job creation through the building of a robust clean energy sector.

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