New College graduates will help fill the need for skilled workers

Toolboxes, cornhole games and small benches.

These are some of the first assignments for nine Department of Corrections students attending Madison College’s Carpentry Skills Academy. As their skills improved over the 18 weeks of the course, they moved on to bigger projects like garden sheds – some with solar panels. Now this special class from Thompson and Oregon Correctional Centers is set to graduate at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, July 26, on the commercial avenue campus of the college (2125 Commercial Avenue)

“Wisconsin DOC has several missions. One of them is to provide opportunities for positive change and achievement,” said Kevin Carr, secretary of the Wisconsin Dept. ofCorrections. “I often remember that when I come to graduation ceremonies like this. Sometimes an opportunity for change is enough.”

Wisconsin desperately needs carpenters and other skilled workers. The hope is that these graduates will be able to establish themselves quickly with employers in the region.

“Construction employment has seen strong growth in Wisconsin and the demand for skilled carpenters is expected to continue,” said Amy Pechacek, secretary designate for the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. “The carpentry program was funded in part by Governor Tony Evers’ Worker Advancement Initiative, allowing the new class of graduates to immediately enter the workforce and meet the needs of our state’s employers. in skilled labor.”

For Madison College, the carpentry partnership underscores its mission of student access and success.

“We pride ourselves on providing a top-level education that will lead these students to lasting careers,” said Dr. Jack Daniels III, president of Madison College. “Their success says a lot about those who want to change their future. ”

Over $75,000 in funds from multiple grants have been used and dedicated by the Workforce Development Board of South Central Wisconsin to the carpentry program.

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