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Releases: Department of Labor, Idaho State, West Valley Medical

Idaho State University receives grant for renewable energy technology program

POCATELLO – Idaho State University’s Energy Systems Technology and Education Center (ESTEC) will offer a new Renewable Energy Technology Technical Certificate Program, beginning March 2011.

The Renewable Energy Technology program is funded through a State Department of Labor Grant made possible by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009. Idaho State University’s College of Technology received $1.5M in funding to offer this program.

Classes for the Renewable Energy Technology program will be offered on-line and evenings with weekend and summer laboratory exercises held on the ISU campus. The on-line delivery of theory courses will make this program accessible to students state-wide. Students receiving their technical certificate will also obtain credits towards ESTEC’s other 2-year degree programs if they elect to continue their education.

This new program will feature a full gamut of renewable energy technologies and power generation sources including wind, solar, hydro and geothermal power. Students will receive on-line instruction concerning the theory and underlying fundamentals of each of these technologies and generation sources prior to completing the laboratory sessions on campus.

West Valley Medical names director of patient care services

CALDWELL – Sheryl Weber, a Registered Nurse, is the new director of patient care services at West Valley Medical Center in Caldwell.

Weber handles oversight and management of nursing supervisors; staffing pool of nurses and certified nursing assistants; care coordination; and utilization review, involving insurance/Medicare approvals.

“This role is vital in making sure the many skills and talents of our high-quality health care team are being maximized,” West Valley Medical Center CEO Kathy Moore said. “Efficiency is a key part of improving the patient experience at our facilities.”

During previous work tenures, Weber has been a corporate educator, case manager for pediatric intensive care and director of nursing.

Weber has a bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration from University of Phoenix and is working toward a master’s in nursing/nursing education, also from University of Phoenix.

Businesses: Labor Grant Can Help Finance On-The-Job Training

Idaho businesses thinking about hiring new employees could benefit from an on-the-job training program the Idaho Department of Labor is coordinating with a $625,000 federal grant.

“This money will help put quality employees back to work with skills that will increase their value to employers across the state,” Department Director Roger B. Madsen said.

Eligible employers are reimbursed for at least 50 percent of the wages they pay to qualified new employees during the on-the-job training period – up to six months depending on the occupation and the trainee’s skill level. The job must pay at least $10 an hour and include employer-subsidized benefits.

The Idaho Department of Labor has stepped up its emphasis on business services, and the push to introduce businesses to on-the-job training program is its newest effort to give employers a lift into the next economic expansion.

Employers can call any of the 25 local Labor offices to learn if the jobs they are planning to fill or the employees they want to hire are eligible.

“If a business calls us with a potential employee we can determine eligibility over the phone,” Madsen said. “If the potential worker is eligible, a Labor consultant will complete the paperwork for the employee’s enrollment.”

Learn more about the program or find the nearest local office on the Labor Department website at labor.idaho.gov.

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