Utility Workforce Training Coming to D.C.

District residents will now have the opportunity to join a workforce training program that will prepare them for employment in the utilities industry.

The District of Columbia Workforce Investment Council (WIC) and the Department of Employment Services (DOES) announced Tuesday, April 11, the launch of the DC Quick Path to Energy Program, in partnership with Pepco Holdings and the University of the District of Columbia Community College.

In her recent State of the District Address, Mayor Muriel Bowser introduced the DC Infrastructure Academy, which aligns with her vision to create a Public Works Academy that prepares District residents for infrastructure jobs.

“As mayor, I am committed to ensuring that economic prosperity reaches residents in all eight wards,” Bowser said. “The creation of the District of Columbia Infrastructure Academy and today’s launch of the DC Quick Path to Energy Program are shining examples of our efforts to create inclusive prosperity across the District by training and connecting residents to jobs in growing and in-demand industries.”

The program, open to all District residents 21 and over, will have five cohorts of 25 participants who will complete a series of industry-focused instruction and trainings, academic and test preparation, and workforce development sessions at the university.

The DC Quick Path to Energy Program will prepare 125 city residents to take the Construction and Skilled Trades (CAST) examination.

At the end of the program, successful participants will have the opportunity to interview for jobs with Pepco and other utility companies.

WIC, a private sector-led board responsible for advising the city government on the development, implementation and improvement of an integrated and effective workforce investment system, will lead the initiative.

“This partnership exemplifies what is possible when the public workforce system responds to the specific needs of business,” said WIC Director Diane Pabich.

The DC Quick Path to Energy Program highlights the agency’s efforts to improve service delivery and training models that put thousands of District residents on a pathway to the middle class.

“DOES is excited to leverage our full array of resources to ensure the business community and employers are connected to qualified talented right here in the District,” said Odie Donald II, the department’s acting director. “We are thankful for Pepco’s partnership in this effort and the leadership of [Pepco] President and CEO David Velazquez.”

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Sarafina Wright –Washington Informer Staff Writer

Sarafina Wright is a staff writer at the Washington Informer where she covers business, community events, education, health and politics. She also serves as the editor-in-chief of the WI Bridge, the Informer’s millennial publication. A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, she attended Howard University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. A proud southern girl, her lineage can be traced to the Gullah people inhabiting the low-country of South Carolina. The history of the Gullah people and the Geechee Dialect can be found on the top floor of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. In her spare time she enjoys watching either college football or the Food Channel and experimenting with make-up. When she’s not writing professionally she can be found blogging at E-mail: Social Media Handles: Twitter: @dreamersexpress, Instagram: @Sarafinasaid, Snapchat: @Sarafinasaid

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