By NICK YAMASHITA
Many youth of Moapa Valley may be able to benefit soon from a new workforce development program coming to the community this summer. The program, being called “Learn It and Earn It,” is coming through a partnership of Help of Southern Nevada, Workforce Connections, Moapa Valley Revitalization Project (MVRP), Moapa Valley Chamber of Commerce and local business owners.
Both employers and potential “trainees” of the program met on Tuesday evening, May 11 at the Clark County Fairgrounds Fine Arts Building to discuss the program. Over sixty employers and “trainees” attended to get the rundown on the program and ask questions.
A number of local employers were present, including Moapa Valley Telephone, True Value Home Hardware, Lin’s Marketplace, Whitney’s Water, Abbott Plumbing, Kasen Kolhoss, and even more.
“This is so needed right now!” expressed Mary Kaye Washburn, President of MVRP which is partnering with the program. “It will help take away some of those barriers to employment especially for the youth.”
The program will be offering young people between the ages of 14-24 the opportunity to work for participating local employers through a summer internship program. Participants gain valuable work experience and get paid to do it
Prospective employees within that age category will be matched to area employers who will provide the work, mentoring and training. The program, through workforce development grant funding, will pay the participants’ wages, workers compensation insurance, and other expenses.
Aletha T. Muzorewa, Program Manager for Workforce Connections in Las Vegas, spoke to the assembled group first, going over the information about the program and answering questions.
“This is a win, win, win situation for all involved,” stated Muzorewa. “This program will help with all sorts of things financially and also training-wise. The potential “trainees” have to do five mandatory trainings: Think Law, Money Skills, Resume Building, Workplace Behavior, Communication 101. We want to help them get the best training and experience as possible for entering the workplace.”
The program is being coordinated under the direction of Mesquite resident Linda Rino, who works for Help of Southern Nevada and Workforce Connections in both Mesquite and Moapa Valley.
“It is so important to get a ground base established,” said Rino. “This a top notch program. It can be a powerful thing, and the youth will see the passion and feel it.”
The program provides a $10 per hour salary for up to 400 hours if the participant puts in full-time. After the initial internship is complete, it can be extended further depending on circumstances.
During the summer, it is recommended the potential employee works 40 hours per week. During the school year that is reduced to 20 hours per week.
There are some income requirements for the program. Participants who have a financial need will have higher priority for placement in the program. Besides taking personal and family income, disabilities, welfare benefits, subsidies, and other factors will taken into consideration for the program.
“We want all those who want to enter the program to come and apply,” said Washburn. “It helps you learn better employment skills. This will help you learn confidence and skills that are so beneficial to you for gaining and keeping employment.”
For more information about the program contact Linda Rino by calling (702) 480-8114 or email [email protected] Rino’s office can be found at 312 W Mesquite Blvd in Mesquite.