Charlotte County Economic Development Partnership

Charlotte County EDP 2021

Charlotte County Economic Development Partnership - Creating a Strategic Path to Grow Business and Cultivate a Strong Community

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 8 of 15

O ne of the biggest questions for any area with Economic Development is whether there is a skilled workforce ready and willing to do the jobs that are "out there." Charlotte Technical College is taking the lead to make certain that there is a steady supply of talented and qualified people who can step up and fill those positions. Many skilled tradespeople are retiring and are not easily being replaced. The need must be addressed. According to Career Source Florida, the statewide workforce policy and investment board of business and government, a skills gap exists in both foundational and technical areas. Communication, time management, leadership and problem-solving form the basis of needed foundation skills training. On the technical side, Information Technolog y, workplace skills and job specific mathematical skills are essential. Meeting this challenge head on, Charlotte Technical College (CTC) is busy filling the current void. According to Deelynn Bennett, CTC Director, the college "offers challenging instructional programs in high wage, high skill, and high demand occupations." Students in the various programs earn industry credentials and articulated college credit upon completion of their programs. CTC's Aviation Airframe Mechanic school program is one of the shining stars in the college's lineup of coursework. There currently are about 50 adults in the airframe program, and they have started a feeder system for high school sophomores and juniors to help get potential students excited and engaged in this high skill and high wage position. The current program capacity can turn out 150 students every 18 months. As an example, "we have an excellent relationship with Allegiant Airlines. They are aware of our students who will be available for employment, and all will have the skills to work on the Airbus planes the airline uses," Bennett says. This type of training is not just for the airlines. Disney and NASCAR both hire people with airframe experience. In Charlotte County, the potential for a maintenance repair operations center that could serve the Punta Gorda Airport could mean hiring students directly into that type of position once they have completed their training. In addition, there are many other programs the college offers to individuals seeking technical training in high paying areas. Local employers want to hire these graduates as soon as they are ready, and some even before course completion. Part of the equation for attracting new businesses related to logistics is to further develop the automotive and diesel engine repair program as the need for students increases in this area. Having a trained workforce ready and able to step into needed jobs in this potential program and any of the twenty plus programs that CTC already offers can attract industries who are considering moving or beginning their operations in and around the airport. A typical student can find a great deal of success and live a quality life. "We have everything you need right here in Charlotte County," Bennett says. "The aviation program can provide you with an opportunity to earn a great income, raise a family right here in Charlotte County, dig your roots in, stay here, and survive here with a very happy lifestyle." Chris Ferrentino and Keegan Cox discuss details about the wind intake system with Mick Thorstenson, a private pilot, at the grand reveal of Charlotte Technical College's Aviation Maintenance Technician School at the Punta Gorda Airport. STEVE LINEBERRY CHARLOTTE COUNTY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP

Articles in this issue

view archives of Charlotte County Economic Development Partnership - Charlotte County EDP 2021