Despite snow emergencies, family emergencies, and long commutes, the six participants of the iSTAR program completed the class requirements on time and graduated May 9.
Doris Haycox of Oak Harbor; Mitch Delaney and Jonathon Cordes, both of Napoleon; Edward Hineline of Toledo; Morris Duke of Lima; and Matthew Milbrodt of Curtice shared their experience of becoming IT specialists with an audience of family, friends, and instructors at Northwest State Community College.
“This program was like working a full-time job,” said Hineline, who would like to hone the skills he learned in the iStar program in internet security, “And the camaraderie and support among the six of us was really special.”
Haycox and the other class members also referred to the support of the group as well as from the instructors and others program managers.
“They kept us extremely focused and motivated,” said Delaney. “They could tell when we were hitting a wall, or were at our wits’ end and felt like we could not go on. Then they would help us to get past those times.”
Some of the group members received instruction free of cost at Northwest State Community College in Archbold or at the University of Toledo’s Scott Park campus, as well as free tuition and books. They are now eligible for paid, on-the-job training to prepare them for careers in computer software engineering, computer systems analysis, and computer programming.
This program is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment Training Administration. Northwest State Community College is operating the grant in partnership with WSOS Community Action Commission. It is intended to alleviate the need to export computer technology jobs.
It is open to residents of Crawford, Defiance, Fulton, Hardin, Hancock, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Putnam, Sandusky, Seneca, Van Wert, Williams, Wood and Wyandot Counties.
Enrollment is ongoing now for a new class. Those who would like to enroll, or who need more information, should call Melisa Wilcox at call 419-267-1494.