18 Dec ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIVINCENZO AND ESSEX COUNTY VOCATIONAL TECHNICAL SCHOOL DISTRICT CONGRATULATE NINE STUDENTS FOR COMPLETING ESSEX COUNTY APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM Recent Graduates of the Essex County Vocational Technical School District Will Work on the Construction of the Essex County Donald M. Payne, Sr. Vocational Technical School

apprenticeshipEssex County, NJ – On Friday, December 18th, Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. and the Essex County Vocational Technical School District congratulated nine students for successfully completing the first-ever Essex County Apprenticeship Program. The nine program participants are all recent graduates of the Essex County Vocational Technical School District and will be hired to work on the construction of the new Essex County Donald M. Payne, Sr. Vocational Technical School.

“This apprenticeship program is an extraordinary opportunity to showcase our graduates from the Essex County Vocational Technical School District. The fact that all nine successfully completed the program speaks volumes about the dedication and commitment of the men and women taking the classes,” DiVincenzo said. “Offered for the first time, this program would not have been possible without the strong partnership between our Vocational School District, our construction manager and the Institute for Social Justice. Working together, we are creating meaningful opportunities for the community to get involved in the school construction project,” he noted.

“The knowledge you have gained is like a passport to a career and an avenue to great things in the future,” NJ State Senator and Deputy Chief of Staff Teresa Ruiz. “Today is not the end. It’s actually the beginning of your adult career and a segue to future opportunities,” she added.

“You have been given a great opportunity, but what you do with that is up to you. You still have to work hard on the job and stand out,” said Wayne Richardson, Freeholder and President of Laborers Local 55, to the graduates.

“I am proud of what we have accomplished so far because at one time residents of inner cities were not welcomed in the union halls,” Essex County Deputy Chief of Staff William Payne said. “All components had to come together to make this successful and I am pleased our Votech district was part of this equation,” he added.

The program was a partnership between the Essex County Small Business Development and Affirmative Action Office, the Essex County Vocational Technical School District, Joseph Jingoli and Son from Lawrenceville, who has been hired as the Construction Manager on the school construction project, and the Institute for Social Justice, which presented the classes.

“This was such a rewarding program because we are directly preparing graduates for a profession in the construction industry and linking them with the unions so they have a job when they graduate,” Essex County Small Business Development and Affirmative Action Director Deborah E. Collins, Esq., said. “The students took this program very seriously, and it showed when we saw how they came together as a group to study and how hard we saw them working on various projects throughout the county’s facilities,” she noted.

“These moments are what education is all about. You represent what the Essex County Vocational Technical Schools are working to achieve,” Assistant Superintendent Dicxiana Carbonell said to the students.

“Welcome to our industry,” Joseph Jingoli, President of Jingoli and Sons, said to the graduates. We build highways, schools, airports and hospitals. We are an important part of the economy. It’s not just a job you will be getting, it’s a career,” he added.

Ryan Haygood, President and CEO of the Institute for Social Justice, congratulated the students for successfully completing the rigorous coursework. Al Williams, Director of Workforce Development and Training for the ISJ, said he enjoyed working with the students because this was the first time in his 20-year career that graduates were guaranteed jobs on a construction project after completing the program.

The nine students who are participating in the program are Ryan Harris, Keir Dargon and Tyler Jones, who all graduated from Essex County Newark Tech Campus; Ibn Brown, Pedro Ortiz and Brian Cappiello, who all graduated from Essex County North 13th Street Campus; and Jaqua Austin, Asadullah Bell and Rasan Chan, who graduated from Essex County Bloomfield Tech Campus. The students have educational backgrounds in the construction trades as carpenters, plumbers, electricians and welders.

During the intensive four-month program, the students worked part-time during the day for Essex County, gaining on the job training with personnel from the Essex County Public Works and Parks departments. The students also attended construction apprenticeship readiness classes presented by the Institute for Social Justice, which was brought in to present the training classes by Joseph Jingoli and Son from Lawrenceville.

In addition to the training received from the ISJ, the students attended a 30-hour Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Outreach Training Program offered by the Essex County Office of Small Business Development and Affirmative Action. The OSHA 30 class is geared for laborers, foremen, superintendents and project managers who work with construction companies on active construction sites. Participants learn about the OSHA Act and the functions of OSHA, information about the procedures and priorities of an OSHA Compliance Inspection, a description of the rights and responsibilities of the employers and employees under the OSHA Act and the tools, skills and knowledge to identify, control and eliminate hazards in the workplace. Students who complete the 30-hour session receive the 30-Hour OSHA Outreach Training certification card.  This card enables the students to pursue a career as a safety engineer on a construction site, a safety supervisor, or OSHA Outreach Trainer through continued study and examination.

The nine students will continue to be employed by Essex County until the construction of the school begins in the spring of 2016. They will be offered jobs as apprentices with the building trade unions supplying the workforce to fill the construction jobs at the new school site. When the new Essex County school is opened, the students will become union members, making them eligible to be hired for other construction jobs.

The Essex County Vocational Technical School District is New Jersey’s first and one of its largest Vocational Technical School Systems. Created in 1914, the school system provides both occupational and academic instruction for high school and adult students in Essex County. The district has four high schools: Bloomfield Tech, Newark Tech, North 13th Street Tech and West Caldwell Tech. In addition, the system provides adult programs in the evening at its Adult Training Center at Newark Tech. The district has an enrollment of approximately 2,200 students and provides high level state-of-the-art career skill development and academic opportunities in over 25 occupational areas. For more information on Essex County’s Vocational Technical Schools, visit www.essextech.org.