Ulster BOCES Showcases Approach to Workforce Development

Ulster BOCES Showcases Approach to Workforce Development

Days before Antonio Delgado was selected as Lieutenant Governor, he joined New York State Senator Michelle Hinchey and Ulster County Legislator Laura Petit on a visit to Ulster BOCES Career & Technical Center to meet with members of the school’s SkillsUSA club to get a first-hand account of the career training program’s approach to workforce development.

Skylee Baker, a Cosmetology student and SkillsUSA Area 4 president and Kevin Thomas, an Electrical Construction & Maintenance student in the SkillsUSA club, both from the Kingston City School District, talked about the school’s Capstone internship program and its economic impact on the county. Thomas explained that the internship program is establishing the Career & Technical Center as a leader in workforce development. “For years this has been known as the best kept secret in Ulster County, but that ends now,” promises Thomas. Ulster BOCES students are currently placed in 73 internships, 41 of which are paid positions.

The guests enjoyed a tour of the facility and heard directly from the students, who spoke about the advantages of attending Ulster BOCES, including gaining hands-on and real-world job experience, as well as valuable networking opportunities with local employers. They also shared their impressive post-graduation plans.

Workplace Learning Coordinator Stephen Casa explains, “Through the internship program, local companies can partner with Ulster BOCES to gain access to trainable, potential long-term employees. It is, in essence, a long-term interview.” He adds, “Students can also learn about the company's culture and whether it's a good fit for long term employment. It's a win-win for all involved.”

Peter Harris, the Director of Learning and Design for the Career Pathways Programs, says the Ulster BOCES’ community was proud to host the officials. “Listening to the students share their first-hand experiences, the powerful impact that career and technical education has on students’ lives is crystal clear,” says Harris. “Career and technical education is important for workforce development and for the financial health of our county.”

To learn more about Ulster BOCES Capstone internship program, Workplace Learning Coordinators Steve Casa at 845-331-6680, ext,  2825 or Dave Rosenberg at 845-331-6680, ext, 2249.

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