Jefferson County approved $1.4M for youth training programs—here’s how to apply

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CAPTE Graduates, training programs
Graduates of the CAPTE program. (The Dannon Project)

In mid-July, the Jefferson County Commission approved over $1.4M in federal funding for the Central Alabama Partnership for Training and Employment (CAPTE). To learn more about what this means, we reached out to Jefferson County, The Dannon Project and Jefferson State Community College. Keep reading to find out how eligible young people can access these incredible no cost training programs.

About CAPTE and the training programs it will fund

Phlebotomy, CAPTE, training programs
Learning phlebotomy skills. (The Dannon Project)

CAPTE is a partnership of several organizations all focused on providing employment assistance, training assistance, and job opportunities for those that need help in the six-county Central Alabama region: 

  • Blount
  • Chilton
  • Jefferson 
  • Shelby
  • St. Clair
  • Walker

This $1.4M allocation targets youth (ages 17-24):

  • with documented barriers to employment
  • who are not in school
  • need help getting started in a career or secure employment paying a living wage

This includes: 

  • Homeless individuals
  • Low-income individuals who need assistance for education or employment
  • Offenders
  • Pregnant or parenting young people
  • School dropouts
  • Youth with disabilities

The $1.4M comes from federal Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA funds). The Jefferson County Workforce Development Department is the fiscal agent of CAPTE and WIOA funds for the six-county region. 

The Dannon Project and Jefferson State Community College are the places young people can go for training under CAPTE.

Wondering if CAPTE could help you or someone you know? Visit their website today.

The goal of the occupational training programs + work-based learning  

Welding, CAPTE, training programs
Students learning welding. (Jefferson State Community College)

The main goal of the programs—which also promote character and leadership development—is to help provide occupational skills training in high-demand fields ranging from healthcare to information technology.

One unique feature of these programs is that they provide wraparound services often neglected by traditional scholarships, such as:

  • Emergency childcare assistance
  • Interview clothing
  • Skills packs for required items such as stethoscopes
  • Case management, which can include stress relief support, financial literacy and entrepreneurship or leadership workshops

The desired outcome: enrollment in further education or full-time employment. 

Student participants can: 

  • Make up to $13.50 an hour while gaining valuable work experience.
  • Earn certifications such as: 
    • Dental assistant
    • Nursing assistant
    • Welding technician
    • And more

The Dannon Project

CAPTE, learning, training programs
Students learning at The Dannon Project. (The Dannon Project)

The Dannon Project’s

  • Occupational skills training contract:
    • Serves 85 participants
    • At a cost of $778,445
  • Work-based learning contract:
    • Serves 50 participants 
    • At a cost of $500,768

The Dannon Project offers the following occupational training and certification programs:

  • Certified Nursing Assistant – total training 12 weeks
  • Certified Patient Care Technician – total training 18 weeks
  • Certified Welders – Total training – 18-20 weeks
  • Certified Plumbing Technicians – Total Training 18-20 weeks 

Classes take place Monday-Friday, 8:30AM-4:30PM. 

Visit www.dannonproject.org to apply; walk in to The Dannon Project’s office at 2324 5th Avenue North, or call 205.202.4072 to request an application via mail or email.

Jefferson State Community College

Jeff State, CAPTE, training programs
Nursing is one of the options at Jeff State. (Jefferson State Community College)

Jefferson State Community College’s contract 

  • Serves 25 participants 
  • At a cost of $189,380 

Jefferson State Community College’s Connect to Your Future Scholarships include:

  • Administrative Medical Assistant
  • Sterile Processing Technician
  • IT Help Desk
  • CompTIA A+
  • Dental Assistant
  • Phlebotomy
Connect to Your Future, CAPTE, training programs
Connect to Your Future. (Jefferson State Community College)

Scholarships cover:

  • training programs
  • paid work-based learning
  • financial literacy
  • job placement assistance
  • wraparound support services

Training programs will begin between September and October 2022. 

Here’s what one participant had to say:

“The IT Help Desk course at Jeff State was mind blowing. The course made it easy to learn with practice tests, quizzes, and examples. In the long run, the program helped me with interviewing skills and job placement. There are different career paths you can look into in IT like networking, coding, and software development. After finishing the coursework and the paid internship through the Connect to Your Future program, the instructors helped me update my resume and find employment. First, I worked for Hibbett Corporation for 6 months. Today, I am currently working for Southern Company as a Helpdesk Agent.” 

Otis Harris

Learn more about what Jeff State offers across all the counties within the Community College’s service area. Visit Jeff State’s website. And, you can email or call Tamarra Cheeks, Case Manager: 205.856.6039 or email or call Teisha Agee, Success Coach: 205.856.7834.

The people behind the training programs

CAPTE Jeff State
Connect to Your Future WIOA Youth Grant staff. Nathaniel Stanley-Coordinator, Tammara Cheeks-Case Manager, and Teisha Agee-Success Coach (Jefferson State Community College)

We spoke to a number of dedicated people to learn about the difference these career development opportunities can make in young people’s lives:

  • Nigel Roberts is the Interim Deputy Director, Workforce Development Department with Jefferson County.
  • Dr. Tamara Payne is the Director of Career and Learning Services at Jefferson State Community College.
  • Kerri Pruitt is Executive Director at The Dannon Project.
  • Takisha Alvis is Program Director at The Dannon Project.

CAPTE is funded by the Alabama Department of Commerce, Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act Program.

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Sharron Swain

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