New Orleans — Streetcar Jobs Training
A job training program was launched in New Orleans in anticipation of the expansion of the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority [RTA] streetcar network, The Huffington Post reports.
The Federal Transit Administration funded a year of classroom and hands-on education in streetcar maintenance for 13 New Orleans residents. The Regional Transit Authority and Delgado Community College collaborated on the program. So far 11 of the program's participants are employed by the RTA, though not all are yet in streetcar maintenance.
The goal of the program was to prepare workers to take over for retiring staff. In 2011 the RTA applied for a $400,000 workforce development grant focusing on disadvantaged workers at least 21 years old. All of this is in anticipation of plans to expand the city's streetcar network significantly.
The $400,000 grant would have paid for a four year college program for 14 students, but the goal of the program was to provide an opportunity for unskilled high school graduates to compete for skilled jobs.