Program to give soldiers head start in civilian job market
Aug. 15, 2016 — KBR, Inc. (NYSE: KBR), Fort Polk and Central Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC) officially launched a new training program for active duty military with a ribbon-cutting ceremony today at CLTCC. The program, which is in partnership with Fort Polk’s Soldier for Life Transition Assistance Program (SFL-TAP), will teach the pipefitting trade to active duty military who are nearing the end of their service.
More than 50 people attended the ceremony at CLTCC’s Lamar Salter Campus in Leesville near Fort Polk, and representatives from all three organizations spoke about the importance of workforce development partnerships that give soldiers a head start in the civilian job market.
The Veteran Pipefitting Training Program was created for active duty military at Fort Polk who are due to transition out of the military within 180 days. The training is a total of 16 weeks. KBR made a significant investment at the campus to renovate an existing facility and build out a brand new classroom and lab space for this training program and has hired an experienced pipefitter and ex-army veteran to deliver the instruction.
The trainees, selected by Fort Polk’s SFL-TAP and KBR, will receive training credentials for both academic and intensive hands-on pipefitting practice by the National Center for Construction Education and Research upon successful completion of the course.
The purpose of the training program is two-fold: to continue KBR’s long partnership with the military by supporting service members as they transition to civilian life, and to also provide a talent pool for KBR’s craft workforce and future construction leadership. KBR has a long history of working alongside the U.S. military and is proud to continue that tradition with helping veterans transition from military service to successful civilian careers.
“A key KBR value is to ‘Develop Our People,’ and we are honored to grow this group of soldiers into craft professionals to join the KBR family,” said David Zelinski, President of KBR’s Onshore Americas business division. “This not only provides an extraordinary talent pool from which to grow KBR’s leaders of tomorrow, but we are supporting our country’s veterans because it is simply the right thing to do,” continued Zelinski.
“This is a big deal for our soldiers. Not only are we bridging the gap for transitioning soldiers, but we are getting one step closer to cementing Fort Polk’s reputation as an installation of choice. This partnership with KBR, Inc., Central Louisiana Technical Community College and Fort Polk’s Soldier For Life-Transition Assistance Program emphasizes that when soldiers leave active service, they are not alone but supported by the army and their communities,” said Garrison Commander Col. David ‘Gregg’ Athey. “This partnership will be a boom to the economy and entice army retirees to stay in Louisiana for their second careers. A huge amount of work has been put into making this program a reality, and I want to thank KBR and CLTCC for having the foresight to realize that our transitioning soldiers are valuable assets to our nation and the workforce.”
“CLTCC is honored to partner with Fort Polk and KBR to train soldiers for this high-demand, high-wage, and highly-skilled career,” said CLTCC Chancellor Jimmy Sawtelle. “We are excited about creating a pipeline of skilled professionals to address the growing demand in Louisiana, which would not be possible without our partners’ generosity, their commitment to establish this pipefitting program, and their commitment to our soldiers.”
KBR is a global technology, engineering, procurement and construction company serving the hydrocarbons and government services industries. With operations in 40 countries, KBR has more than 25,800 people delivering services to customers in over 80 countries.
Fort Polk is a United States Army installation located in Vernon Parish, approximately ten miles east of Leesville, Louisiana, and thirty miles north of DeRidder in Beauregard Parish.
CLTCC is a two-year technical and community college offering associate degrees, technical diplomas, industry certificates, and customized training in more than 15 disciplines to support local workforce development and prepare students for good-paying jobs. CLTCC serves nine parishes in central Louisiana through its seven locations and provides instruction in three state prisons and two federal correctional institutions. For more information, visit www.cltcc.edu.