Jan 29, 2021

Initiative will expand employment pathways and opportunities with RTA

CLEVELAND — A job hub bringing Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) programming to the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) will help the agency recruit new employees, upskill current workers and enhance leadership teams.

The training partnership aims to increase workforce sustainability in the transportation industry while creating employment pipelines that lead residents toward RTA jobs with family-sustaining wages. Programming will begin in February.

“We are elated to engage in this training and recruitment partnership with Tri-C,” said India Birdsong, RTA’s CEO and general manager. “As our daily mission is to serve the public, we hope that programs like this can help bring economic stability to Greater Cleveland families for generations to come.

To recruit new talent from the community, plans call for offering employment pathway programs such as the College’s Workforce Success course, Adult Diploma Program and Women in Transition in coordination with the transit agency.

Tri-C training options for current RTA employees will range from leadership sessions offered through Tri-C’s Corporate College® to commercial driver’s license (CDL) refresher courses run by the Transportation Innovation Center. Most sessions will take place at RTA locations.

The overall program is part of RTA’s plan to address expected job openings, as nearly 30% of its workforce is eligible to retire in the next four years. The goal is to fill the positions while maintaining safe, reliable, clean and courteous service to customers in Cuyahoga County.

In late 2019, RTA partnered with Tri-C on a temporary CDL training program to recruit and train bus and paratransit operators. Dozens have used the program to land in an RTA driver’s seat. The program is ongoing.

Our growing partnership with RTA works to enhance employment opportunities at a time when so many in our community are facing financial hardship,” Tri-C President Alex Johnson said. “These programs are more than an investment in our city — they’re an investment in people.”

The expanded program with RTA will fall under Tri-C’s Institute for Community Engagement and Development. The institute provides pathways out of poverty for underserved populations by connecting them to education, training and jobs through community and business partnerships.

Aside from job hub programs, the institute will also manage Tri-C’s Access Centers and community partnership programs that bring workforce training directly to Northeast Ohio sites.

MEDIA: For more information, contact Tri-C’s John Horton at john.horton@tri-c.edu
or RTA’s Linda Krecic at lkrecic@gcrta.org.