The University of Hawaii Maui College will administer and receive about a third of a $12.7 million federal grant to expand job training on the Neighbor Islands.
The money will be used for one-year certification programs for residents who are unemployed or looking to upgrade their skills, including veterans, said Susan Wyche, special projects coordinator at UH-Maui College, on Wednesday.
Programs will be developed in geographic information services, electric vehicle repair and maintenance, entrepreneurial and small business, food innovation with development of “value-added” products from fresh fruit and vegetables and food security, water and wastewater treatment and sustainability in green building and energy efficiency, she said.
The curriculum for most of these programs currently is not offered by UH-Maui College and will have to be developed, which will take six months to a year, said Wyche. The college does offer a sustainability program, so the money will be used to enhance that curriculum.
Wyche noted that there currently is no training in water and wastewater treatment and that “massive retirements” are expected in this area.
The programs probably will be online for next summer and fall semesters, she said.
The offerings will be one-year programs, presented either online or as a hybrid online-face-to-face. The programs will be offered for two years. Popular programs may be incorporated into the offerings of the college after the end of the grant term, Wyche said.
The workforce development grant with UH-Maui College and Kauai and Hawaii community colleges engaged as a consortium is a first for the Neighbor Island institutions, she said. UH-Maui College will administer the program with each institution receiving roughly a third of the grant, she said.
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