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Act 13 Funds Support Tuition-Free Training for Natural Gas Jobs

With Act 13 (impact fee) funding recently approved by the Lycoming County Commissioners, Pennsylvania College of Technology will provide $50,000 in ShaleNET scholarships to 50 veterans, unemployed and underemployed residents of the county.

The college will offer tuition-free training – $1,000 per student – to provide the basic skills and certifications required for entry-level employment in the oil and natural gas industry. Classes will lead to employment in the occupations of roustabout, floorhand, completion technician and welder helper.

The short-term, noncredit, certificate-awarding program trains residents in three primary skill areas identified by employers as critical to successful employment: job readiness, workplace and environmental safety, and technical awareness.

The college’s partners for the program are the Central Pennsylvania Workforce Development Corp., PA CareerLink, the Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association, and the Marcellus Shale Coalition.

PA CareerLink in Williamsport will assist ShaleNET staff with promoting the opportunity to county residents, recruiting students, providing education regarding expectations of being employed by the industry, coordinating necessary assessments and assisting with selecting appropriate occupations for training. PIOGA, the MSC and PA CareerLink will assist with placement.

“We value the contribution of Act 13 funding made to Pennsylvania College of Technology by the Lycoming County Commissioners,” said Tracy L. Brundage, assistant vice president for workforce and economic development at the college. “This is a substantial investment in the future for residents of Lycoming County, especially for veterans, unemployed and underemployed persons. This action underscores the priority the county and Penn College place on training our residents for lifelong careers in the oil and gas industry – careers that pay family-sustaining wages and enhance the quality of life for individuals, families and the county.”

The average annual wage for Marcellus Shale core industries is approximately $83,000, according to the state Department of Labor and Industry.

Workforce Development & Continuing Education at Penn College trains more than 10,000 students through noncredit courses each year and administers funding to more than 30 educational institutions that train more than 50,000 students annually. For more information, call 570-327-4775.

For more about Penn College, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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