JJC joins with employers on new engineering/technician degree

2/26/2015, 2:57 p.m.
Applications will be accepted through March 31 for the new Operations Engineering and Technician Program, which is to begin in ...

Joliet Junior College provided this news release:

With support from state Sen. Sue Rezin and several local employers, Joliet Junior College has developed a new technical program that will lead graduates directly to careers in the petrochemical, nuclear and manufacturing industry.

The Operations Engineering and Technician Program will launch in fall 2015, and applications will be accepted March 2-31, 2015. Students accepted into the program will be able to pursue an associate degree in either Operations Engineering or Operations Technician.

“We are proud to introduce this new program that articulates a clear career pathway for our students,” said JJC President Dr. Debra Daniels. “We are grateful for the valuable relationships we have with our local legislators and area employers that were essential to the development of this program.”

With anticipated industry growth and an increasing number of retirees in coming years, many openings for well-paying, stable jobs are expected at energy and manufacturing companies.

JJC worked closely with partners Aux Sable Liquid Products, Exelon (Braidwood, Dresden and LaSalle Stations), LyondellBasell, Grundy Area Vocational Center, Coal City School District and Grundy Economic Development Council to develop the curriculum and ensure that students would be learning the precise skills employers would be looking for in future employees.

Rezin lauded the development of the program and the critical partnership between local education and industries.

“The new Operations Engineering and Technician associate degree program will do wonders not only for our students but our communities,” State Senator Sue Rezin (R-Morris) said. “A program like this does two really important things. One, it keeps our talented students interested in this field here, instead of studying in another state. Also, because of our partners with this program including Exelon, Aux Sable, and Lyondell, this program creates a bridge for high school students to jobs in the industry in our area.”

“I want to thank everyone involved who brought this new associate degree program to Will County and Grundy County,” Rezin said. “Providing new opportunities for young people only makes us a stronger and more attractive region.”

For more information on the OET program, visit: http://www.jjc.edu/operations-engineering-tech/Pages/default.aspx.