A local college is teaming up with the City of Priceville to prepare students for future jobs in our area—including positions at Mazda-Toyota.
WAAY 31 spent the day talking with parents about the opportunities in store for their children.
“The choice is up to him, but I will encourage him to look into that as a career path for him, because it’s something he will enjoy," said Erin Lokken.
That was Lokken’s response when WAAY 31 told her about Calhoun Community College’s Workforce Development Program coming to Priceville.
In fact, the new program will take place in a building right behind the Priceville Public Library where Lokken volunteers.
Lokken believes her son would definitely be interested in trying out the program.
"He’s my hands-on child," Lokken said. "Getting him to read a book is hard, but if you give him a tool or a project, that is his thing.”
A representative from Calhoun Community College told WAAY 31 the program will involve training in fields like construction, plumbing, electrical work, operating heavy equipment, and even robotics.
“I am excited that they have this opportunity, because I know there’s a shortage of skilled labor in this country and there has been for a while," Lokken said.
The program will also train future workers of the nearby Mazda-Toyota plant, which some people believe will have a far-reaching impact.
“It will benefit the town of Priceville and the surrounding communities—Somerville, Hartselle, and even Decatur," Paula Hensley said.
“It’s going to be a blessing for students and probably the country as a whole in the long run," Lokken added.
Right now, the building where the new program will be held belongs to the City of Priceville, but officials tell WAAY 31 that Calhoun Community College will take ownership of the building in March, and the Workforce Development classes will begin in August.
Priceville's Economic Development Chair, Joe Lubisco, told WAAY 31 that the building has been empty for eight years, and he's excited to see it being put to good use.
Officials with Calhoun Community College tell us they’re expecting to have at least 80 students enrolled in the program in Priceville by August.