PITTSBURGH, May 10, 2004 — The first class in the Electrical Distribution Technology (EDT) program at Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC) graduates on Tuesday, May 11, in a ceremony at the Benedum Center downtown.
The EDT program prepared the 24 graduating students for a variety of jobs in the electrical field, with an emphasis in the lineworker area. The students spent the past two years in a program of study that combined academic courses taught at CCAC North Campus and essential lineworker training at Duquesne Light Company’s Edison Service Center in Shaler Township.
With an associate degree in electrical distribution technology, the graduates will have developed marketable skills designed to open the door to potential job opportunities not only in the Pittsburgh region but also throughout the tri-state area. Duquesne Light plans to hire a number of the graduates as second-class lineworkers.
“This is a model work force program in which an employer, Duquesne Light, collaborated with CCAC, in the development of an associate degree program designed to meet a growing industry need,” said Stewart Sutin, CCAC president. “We wish these graduates well and congratulate Duquesne Light for recognizing the importance an associate degree education makes to the region’s work force.”
“We are proud that our program provides graduates with very versatile skills which are viable in the region’s job market,” said Jane Cuff, Duquesne Light’s EDT program director. “Not only are the students trained for employment in the electric industry, their skills can be used in the telephone and cable industries as well. These skills provide the opportunity for a well-paying job that will enable people to remain in this region, raise a family and enjoy a fulfilling career.”
While the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average annual salary in Pennsylvania is $34,000, these jobs are expected to have a starting yearly income in the $40,000 range.
The EDT students were required to complete their course of study over 21 consecutive months. A second class of students has completed its first year of study and will begin a summer field internship at Duquesne Light on June 1.
In April, the electric utility held a number of orientation classes for prospective students for the fall 2004 enrollment. More than 100 prospective students have expressed interest in the next class. Seventy-nine applicants will participate in a weeklong pole-climbing course at the Edison facility during the weeks of June 1, June 7 and June 14. From those applicants, approximately 30 students will be selected to begin the program in August.
The graduation ceremony begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Benedum Center on 7th Street for students from each of the four CCAC campuses. Presiding over the ceremony will be CCAC President Stewart Sutin. Guest speaker is Linda Dickerson.
About Duquesne Light Company
Duquesne Light Company (NYSE: DQE – News) is a leader in the transmission and distribution of electric energy, offering superior customer service and reliability to more than half a million direct customers in southwestern Pennsylvania.
About Community College of Allegheny County
The Community College of Allegheny County is the largest provider of workforce training in western Pennsylvania with an annual enrollment of more than 90,000 credit and noncredit students. The college offers quality, affordable programming in health care, business, computers, trades and technologies, and social services, as well transfer programs for students who wish to eventually pursue a bachelor’s degree. CCAC is also accessible with four campuses, seven college centers and hundreds of neighborhood locations throughout Allegheny and Washington counties.