Sowela offers Workforce Scholarship Program

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Sowela Technical Community College is offering a Workforce Scholarship Program with tuition as low as $50 for students interested in millwright or pipefitting careers.

Classes begin this spring, and Sowela’s Office of Workforce Solutions and Financial Aid will host a free informational session at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 4, in the college’s Arts and Humanities building.

With the massive industrial expansion taking place in Southwest Louisiana, millwrights and pipefitters are in an increasingly high demand, said Darlene Hoffpauir, institutional advancement coordinator. The college is offering both full and partial scholarships for both training courses, and funds will be distributed based on the number of applicants and amount of available funding.

Pipefitting training is an eightweek course, from 7:30 until 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, and millwright training is a six-month course, from 7:30 until 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Completion of both courses will result in the necessary credentials to gain employment in the respective industries.

Both professions require basic levels of math and an enjoyment of problem solving, troubleshooting and project-based work, said David Hayes, executive director of workforce solutions.

During the training and, upon graduation, the college will help with job placement by bringing industry partners to the classes regularly to discuss job readiness and career outlook.

Scholarship recipients will also be paired with a community mentor to help guide them through the training and employment process, said Allison Dering, director of financial aid and scholarships.

To be eligible for the Workforce Scholarship, candidates must be unemployed or underemployed, must be able to pass a drug and screen and provide an up front payment of $50 towards their tuition, Dering said. Scholarship applications will be prioritized based on the home location of the applicant — Westlake applicants with first priority, Sulphur with second and other Calcasieu Parish residents with third priority.

For more information, visit www.sowela.edu/workforcescholarship or contact the Office of Workforce Solutions at 337-421-6560 or workforce@sowela.edu.

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