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Training program provides job seekers skills they need to get hired

By Margo Spann, mspann@wisctv.com
Published On: Dec 24 2013 11:46:27 AM CST
Updated On: Oct 23 2013 08:20:02 PM CDT

Blackhawk Transport

BELOIT, Wis. -

A new worker training program is providing people with the skills they need to get back into the workforce.

Area businesses in the Work Today Program pay to have employees trained for openings at their companies.

News3 first told you about the program in June and now that they've had their first success story, they're looking for more job seekers and employers to join the program.

Trucks are moving and business is booming at Blackhawk Transport in Beloit.

President/CEO Mike Holloway said they started this year with just over 100 employees. Now they're up to about 248.

"We've grown in the Kenosha area, Beloit area, Milwaukee, Appleton, Green Bay, so we have a huge interest in management trainees and a huge driver force," said Holloway.

In the last two months they've hired about 60 people, both drivers and office staff. They partnered with the Southwest Wisconsin Workforce Development Board's Work Today Program to help them find more workers.

"We're currently in need of filling another 25-30 driver positions and 5-10 management trainee positions,” said Holloway.

Gail Graham, business services coordinator for Southwest Wisconsin Workforce Development Board, coordinates the program.

She describes it as employer-driven. They ask companies what they're looking for to help fill open positions.

"We are in the process of looking for folks. We've got a couple of folks we are working with. We have one placement at Blackhawk Transport,” said Graham.

They're currently working with Cotta Transmissions, DuPont, Regal Beloit and Blackhawk Transport.

"What we're trying to do again is develop that baseline of education. So once we get that in place with these companies we'll be able to get that training started and we'll be able to get people placed. Rock County is working we just are needing to train some people to have them a little better skilled,” Graham said.

The first person to complete the program works at Blackhawk and is already moving up the ladder within the company.

"There’s a second candidate that's in the process now. So far, we look forward to more of the same and seeing some more candidates come in, very pleased so far,” Holloway said.

He said the average driver makes around $54,000 a year. If you're an employer or a job seeker interested in the program contact Graham at 608-314-300, ext. 304. Her office is at the Rock County Job Center. You can also apply for open positions online.

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