An initiative announced Monday seeks to train more women to enter the utilities industry.
The program, Utility Readiness for Gaining Employment for Non-Traditionals: Women, or URGENT, will provide participants with more than 130 hours of free classroom training, workshops and access to recruiters from PSEG Long Island, National Grid and New York American Water. Nassau Community College, the Workforce Development Institute and the region’s largest utility companies are partners in the program.
About 20 women will be referred to the training program by the Nassau County Department of Social Services. URGENT will be funded by the Workforce Development Institute, and training — expected to run from February through April — will be held at Nassau Community College.
“It will be highly selective at first,” said W. Hubert Keen, president of Nassau Community College. Subsequent sessions of the program are expected to have more available slots, and similar programs may be developed for other groups, such as veterans. Keen said the industry partnership “fits the mission of Nassau Community College.”
Participants who successfully complete training will receive certificates making them eligible to work as electrical technicians, station operators, mechanic trainees or meter readers.
The Workforce Development Institute, a partner of New York State’s AFL-CIO, was founded in 2003 to provide workforce training services to unions.