College, Careers & Coffee - Post Falls Edition - March 2018

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coffee and careers

Terry Cruz Workforce Training Center/NIC

The WFTC offers short-term noncredit professional development classes in healthcare, trades and industry, and business. Some of the classes that lead to a healthcare credential include Certified Nursing Assistant, Patient Care Coordinator/HUC, Phlebotomy and Certified Patient Care Technician. The school offers Class A CDL training and the required schooling for the Electrical, Plumbing and HVAC trades.


They also house the Small Business Development Center which offers classes on Planning for Business Success, Marketing Strategies and other business management courses. In addition, the WTFC can arrange customized training for individual skill development or for business, industry or technology needs. Contact Colleen Hoffman :


Terry Cruz is a career planner in the Qualified Worker Retraining Program, funded by WIOA. Her target populations are low income adults and displaced homemakers who can benefit from WIOA services.


Michelle Garrity was hired through a grant from Health and Welfare as the Employment and Training Services Program Specialist at the WFTC. She will work with clients receiving Food Stamps to encourage skill development, higher education and employment. She will work specifically with Maximus clients. The program can offer assistance with gas vouchers, resume development and items required for training such as scrubs, books etc.


Peggy Schnell is the apprenticeship coordinator at the WFTC. She oversees the Electrical, HVAC and Plumbing apprentice programs which each require 144 hours of school for four years plus the required work hours to reach journeyman status. She noted that math is required in all three trades. Our local building contractors group has commented on the lack of qualified workers across all the trades. Another observation is the lack of soft skills and the ability to stay drug free on the job.

Idaho Department of Labor Continues to Recruit Adults to Apply for Job Assistance


IDOL Terri Petraske, career planner. WIOA offers re-employment services to low income adults, displaced homemakers, dislocated workers and youth up to age 24. Re-training and skills upgrading support can include tuition and books,  additional supportive services such as gas vouchers and car repairs are available, and work-based learning can be arranged. WIOA can pay the wage for short term internships, share wage costs with employers for on-the-job training and provide learning-rich work experiences for youth.



Voc Rehab Update


Voc Rehab: Roxanne Egeland

VR is a state-federal program whose goal is to assist people with disabilities prepare for, secure, retain or regain employment.


The VR School/Work counselors are attending a two-day training event for transitioning students called Tools for Life in Moscow. Eligible students from the regional are attending this important event.


Making Assistive Technology Work For You! Throughout the two-day event, there will be keynote speakers and presentations around employment, assistive technology, post-secondary education, independent living, and self-advocacy/self-direction.


VR has counselors available in all the outlying areas. Contact VR to arrange an appointment or to check the orientation schedule. (208) 769-1441

TRIO Update 


Gayle Otto/Amanda Smith of  TRIO ETS

TRIO works with low income, First Generation College bound students. Located in the NIC Molstead Library, they help students with career exploration and the admissions and financial aid process for any higher education entity.  TRIO can pay for career assessments. Gayle has been doing outreach with the GED/Remediation classes at AEC. They are advertising for a math tutor to work with the middle school clients. This position will also have general office assistant duties. Amanda’s Twelve Together program is focused on dropout prevention at the middle school level.

Health Professions Expo

Health professions expo

Dotty Heberer, C.N.A. & Health Professions Coordinator at the WFTC circulated a flyer for the Health Professions Expo and Career Fair scheduled at NIC’s main campus May 18 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be segments on interviewing tips conducted by Kootenai Health, healthcare employers on site and information on all the healthcare programs offered by NIC and the WFTC.  Volunteers are needed! 

Program Needs Staff Help


Francis Huffman TESH CEO


Tesh partners with Vocational Rehabilitation and local businesses to offer short-term paid employment for 50 students ages 16 – 20 who are still enrolled in school.  Individuals “must be eligible for and receiving special education or related services under IDEA.”


This summer program can only work if the staffing needs are met! TESH has approximately 25 open positions as job support worker, paying $11.50 per hour. Applicants must be drug free and pass a background check. This is a rewarding summer job and could be perfect for a college student looking for internship hours.  Francis would be happy to present to any classes or groups who may be interested in this job opportunity.

Financial Education Classes


Sherry Wallis STCU Community Development Officer.

Sherry offers Financial Education classes in the community at Lunch and Learn events. They have recently added classes at the local libraries for high school students and at Maximus which works with Food Stamp recipients. She is available to present to large or small groups.

Funding Available for Dual Credit Classes


Advanced Opportunities, Stephanie Childress


Advanced Opportunities will continue provide funding for dual credit classes: $15million this year vs. $13 million last year. She shared that a local symposium of colleges discussed why 75 percent of students say they will go on versus the 45 percent who actually do. The PTECH 10-week job readiness class is covering soft skills and career planning with their students. They have noted that at least 6 points of contact plus a phone call seem to be required for the students to get things completed.

Next Meeting:



April 3


TESH, 3327 W. Industrial Loop, off of Atlas