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NELPCO and LDCC provide brand-new electrical linemen program in Winnsboro

NELPCO and LDCC provide brand-new electrical linemen program in Winnsboro

The Northeast Louisiana Power Cooperative (NELPCO) and Louisiana Delta Community College (LDCC) have united to introduce an intensive, cutting-edge workforce training program designed to prepare aspiring linemen and women for their careers in energy in the northeast region.

This training program addresses the increasing need for electrical line workers both locally and nationally. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a growing demand for electrical power-line installers and repairers due to the expanding electrical grid, with an average of 9,700 annual job openings expected over the next decade. Jeff Churchwell, NELPCO general manager, elaborates on the cause of this labor shortage: “These openings are largely due to long-time workers transitioning to other occupations or leaving the workforce, such as through retirement,” Jeff Churchwell, NELPCO General Manager, explains. “We opted for a solution that combined education with community engagement.”

For many years, NELPCO has run its own year-long training program. However, given the local labor shortages in the energy sector, there's an increasing need for a more expedited training course. LDCC's Workforce department specializes in providing short-term training solutions to enhance career opportunities and skill development for the NELA community. The collaborative workforce course between NELPCO and LDCC condensed the training duration to just 16 weeks by integrating NELPCO's curriculum and emphasizing intensive learning. “Industry needs are the driving force behind our workforce solutions,” explains John Garrison, LDCC's workforce director. "Partnering with industry leaders like NELPCO enables us to build programs that are high-quality and hands-on. These collaborations also provide vital industry connections to students.”

Jeff Churchwell, NELPCO's General Manager, emphasizes the importance of community involvement: “As an energy co-op, it’s our responsibility to not just power homes but empower our community. Teaming up with LDCC to develop this specialized training is more than just addressing a shortage—it’s about investing in our future and the community that surrounds us.”

In addition to offering curriculum expertise, NELPCO has provided equipment that will serve as valuable training resources for students during the course. LDCC will house the training facilities on the Winnsboro Campus at 2889 Highway 15, Winnsboro, LA.

The first LDCC Electrical Lineman Workforce Course will take place this summer, from June 3rd to September 20th. Click the link below for more information! Registration is open now and will close May 1st. The cost of this course is $8,000, and scholarships are available. Individuals with a Class A or B Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) will be offered priority enrollment; LDCC’s CDL workforce course will also be available for others. Get more information about participating in the course here.

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