Somerset Community College launches Education First Employers program

Somerset Community College (SCC) announced that it is partnering with several companies in the Lake Cumberland area to work on strengthening the area’s workforce and improve access to higher earning potential for employees.
Businesses in Kentucky’s key sectors including healthcare, manufacturing, skilled trades and many others will be called Education First Employers.
SCC’s Education First Employer partnering companies are Toyotetsu American, Inc. (TTAI), Lake Cumberland Regional Hospital, and American Woodmark Corporation.
According to SCC, companies that qualify to participate in this program share values and have shown a commitment to go above and beyond to support employees through education and training. To achieve the Education First Employer designation, businesses must provide tuition assistance, flexible scheduling, and offer competitive wages. These businesses must also actively partner with SCC to enhance students’ employability skills and better position graduates for high earning potential in today’s economy.
“Kentucky is welcoming historic economic investments that are creating thousands of great new jobs. At the same time, we’re also seeing rising wages and record low unemployment,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “The Education First Employers initiative will make sure this rising prosperity reaches every Kentuckian where they live. It will also help us keep our promise to provide the best workforce for the increasing number of employers choosing our state to do business.”
The majority of students leaving higher education are making an impossible choice, forced to put their finances and work schedule before their pursuit of a better life. Education First Employers are working with SCC to reverse what it called a troubling trend.
“SCC is committed to partnering with local companies, increasing the skill level of our workforce and bettering the lives of our learners,” SCC President Dr. Carey Castle said. “As labor participation rates remain below pre-pandemic levels, this alliance offers a solution through increased access to attainable education. In turn, we aim to increase program completion rates, the skill level of our workforce, and the standard of living in our communities.”

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