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Trades apprenticeship program coming to PCC
Photos and Story by James Hill
Two local job training and workforce development mainstays have joined forces as the Evening Trades Apprenticeship Preparation program relocates to Portland Community College, where it has merged with the college’s Margaret Carter Skill Center and Trades and Industry programs.
ETAP will retain its name and evening-and-weekend training schedule after its transition to the Cascade Campus, where it will complement the job training curriculum offered in the Skill Center and pre-trades programs. Both the ETAP and PCC programs are oriented toward training people from disadvantaged or underrepresented backgrounds, and both offer a similar combination of “soft skills” (how to apply for a job, how to dress and speak at an interview, etc.) and “hard skills” (hands-on, trades-related skills) training, as well as courses in basic math and reading competency.
The transfer of this evening trades program, however, will allow PCC to expand its workforce development offerings to encompass job placement, retention and follow-up services.
“The addition of ETAP to PCC’s slate of workforce development programs means that we will be able more effectively and thoroughly help the people of this community acquire the skills they need to find and keep a living-wage job,” said Algie Gatewood, president of the Cascade Campus. “There is a growing demand for the kind of skills taught by programs like ETAP, which will only increase as the global economy grows more and more competitive.”
The Evening Trades Apprenticeship Preparation program had been run by the Housing Authority of Portland, administered by Construction Apprenticeship and Workforce Solutions Inc., a consortium of Portland-area contractors interested in increasing the number of skilled apprentices in the local construction workforce. Housing Authority Director Steve Rudman echoed Gatewood’s enthusiasm at the transfer of the program to PCC.
“PCC is a natural fit for ETAP. This new home brings even more benefits to our residents and others who enroll in the program,” Rudman said. “They now will become college students, earning college credit, and will be exposed to all of PCC’s excellent training and educational opportunities in this area and beyond.”
The Cascade Campus is located in North Portland at 705 N. Killingsworth St.