Lincoln Land Community College will expand training for in demand jobs

Lincoln Land Community College officials are campaigning for a $5 million federal grant in response to a need to fill certain positions.

The college said the money will go towards renovating and expanding training facilities that would allow more students to be trained as paramedics, paramedics, truck drivers, diesel mechanics and farming specialists.

The positions are considered in demand.

“Every time an ambulance is late for a call, the urgent need for additional paramedics and EMTs becomes clearer,” said Christopher McDowell, MD, chair of emergency medicine at the SIU School of Medicine. “Expanding LLCC’s Emergency Service Program is critical to increasing the supply of EMS providers to serve the citizens of our communities.”

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“We welcome the expansion of LLCC’s truck driver training program to address the continuing shortage of workers to fill positions in our industry,” commented Don Schaefer, executive vice president of the Mid-West Truckers Association. “There are currently more than 1,700 high-paying truck driver jobs open in the LLCC District, and quality education is the first step in filling them with safe and reliable drivers.”

In our space, which includes the construction, agriculture and transportation industries, there is a significant need for diesel technicians,” said Dan Smith, vice president of product support for Roland Machinery Co., headquartered in Springfield. “Last week there were 427 diesel technician jobs within a 100 mile radius of Springfield. These are high-paying positions that can also lead to career advancement in parts and service management. We are excited and excited that LLCC will be training new diesel technicians and look forward to hiring their graduates.”

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LLCC President Charlotte Warren, Ph.D. announced that the funds will be used to:

* Renovate Logan Hall’s East Wing for an advanced EMT training facility, purchase a working ambulance and state-of-the-art equipment and simulators to allow more than 400 students to enroll in EMT, Advanced EMT and Paramedic training programs each year.

* Expand truck driver training ground and purchase a new tractor and trailer, allowing for an additional 90 new students for a total of 251 students per year

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*Renovate a lab at the Workforce Careers Center to house and outfit a new diesel technology program. The first class will admit 20 to this two-year program next fall, adding cohorts thereafter.

* Build a large warehouse next to the truck driver training ground to house heavy equipment for farming and diesel technology programs as well as the new ambulance for emergency services. As these programs grow, the college will continue to offer the latest in industry to students.

The grant was awarded to LLCC by the Economic Development Administration of the US Department of Commerce.