New training programs help move people forward in their careers

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — During this time, all types of employers are looking for people to work at their business.

This is the reason why experts say now is the perfect time to get trained in a new job field.

Ann Carr is the Executive Director for Southeast Alabama Works and said if you lost your job due to COVID, now is a great time to take advantage of different programs offered in Alabama designed to help people get trained for skilled jobs.

She advises, as you drive down the street it is hard not to notice all the places that are hiring but if you aren’t wanting a job in retail or fast food, now is the time to get trained in the field you always dreamed of.

“Sometimes when you go and you are looking at jobs and you are looking at all the requirements you kind of get a little overwhelmed, if you never had that experience,” Carr said.

Carr tells WDHN, Alabama was recently awarded a little over $17 million to help workers who have been displaced by COVID-19, develop new skills in high demand industries.

The Alabama Workforce Stabilization Program also helps new workers enter occupations that are in demand and assist low-wage workers wanting to transition to a higher paying job.

These industries include healthcare, advanced manufacturing, information technology, transportation, distribution, and construction.

Another goal for the program is to help 200 Alabama businesses avoid layoffs, up-skill current employees, and develop talent.

“It is something that nobody can ever take away from you,” Carr said. “It is on your record, it’s on your resume so this is something that can be a personal contribution to yourself.

According to Carr, all three community college systems in the Wiregrass offer the Ready to Work program.

This is a program managed by the Alabama Community College System Office and provides a career pathway for people with limited education and employment experience.

This program is completely free and is offered 95 percent online.

She said the colleges have also designed courses that fit the needs of businesses in many different industries. Plus, since workers are in such high demand Carr said employers will offer to pay for some courses.

In addition, Carr tells WDHN the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act, which helps people who lost their jobs or lower-income individuals get training in skilled fields.

“If a company sees that you are willing to take that step to better yourself, then you are going to seem like more of a commodity, more valuable to them and they are going to want to invest in you as well,” Carr said.

Carr encourages anyone looking for a new job to take a look at these programs. She said there is no better time than now for people to get the training and certification to elevate their careers.

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