Stark State awarded $13.2 million for oil and gas training

Laurie Huffman Dix Communications Published:

CANTON -- Stark State College has been awarded $3.26 million in grants from the Department of Labor and The Timken Foundation to fund oil and gas-related labs and equipment at the Energy Innovation Center of its new Downtown Canton Satellite Center, scheduled for completion in 2015. The funds to construct the EIC, being built in downtown Canton, were received in early 2011 through a $10 million grant from the State of Ohio. The Canton Satellite Center will become the headquarters for the college's training in the oil and gas industry.

The $2.76 million from DOL and $500,000 from The Timken Foundation will fund education training systems for associate degree and certificate programs related to the growing oil and gas industry. It will also cover costs to create and supply training labs for oil and gas instrumentation and electronics, geographic information systems, geology, drilling, production, and welding. In addition, the money will be used for development of ShaleNET-US and Lease Operator labs, which will include mock-ups and supplies for well head, tank battery, pump jack, natural gas compression and production/well site training.

"These generous awards position Stark State College to become a national model for curriculum development in the shale oil and gas industry," said Para M. Jones, Ph.D., president of Stark State College. "Employers need well-trained, credentialed workers to fill a wide range of jobs. In conjunction with industry leaders such as Chesapeake, EnverVest, Marathon, ShaleNET-US, The Timken Company, Dominion and others, Stark State is addressing the need for highly-skilled workers pursuing gainful employment in Ohio's expanding oil and gas industry."

Jones also reported it is "very exciting" for Stark State to play such a critical role in workforce development for Ohio's oil and gas industry and promote economic development in northeast Ohio. The college's industry-approved credentialing, credit-based stackable certificates and degrees will prepare adults for various stages of employment and will allow them to progress to develop new skills for advanced employment. "These DOL awards are highly competitive, and the funds will benefit our local economy through a better-trained workforce ready to work for oil and gas companies," Jones added.

Participation in Career Enhancement programs allows students to broaden and develop new work skills, certify proficiencies, and earn college credit toward a degree.Courses are on-campus, but can also be held on site and tailored for the needs of local businesses.

For more information, call 330-494-6170.

Want to leave your comments?

Sign in or Register to comment.