FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mary Peterson, director of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 7 Superfund Division, will visit Springfield Monday, April 16 to serve as the keynote speaker for the Missouri Job Center’s Green for Greene program graduation at 1 p.m. at The Drew Lewis Foundation@The Fairbanks, 1126 N. Broadway. She will also tour brownfields projects around Springfield,which include The Fairbanks.
The Missouri Job Center’s Green for Greene program is an EPA grant-funded “green” job training program designed to train and secure well-paying environmental jobs for residents of Zone 1.
The specific, free training courses include certifications in OSHA Hazwoper; OSHA 10; Environmental Sampling and Monitoring; Trench and Excavation; Confined Space; Lead Renovation Repair and Painting (RRP); Lead Abatement Worker; Asbestos Worker/Handler; Stormwater Management; Forklift Driver; First Aid/CPR; and Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).
The Green for Greene program was created with a $200,000 grant from EPA’s Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) program in 2017. The grant was one of only 18 made available nationwide, as part of a $3.5 million grant package.
Since EPA launched the EWDJT grant program in 1998, more than 256 grants have been awarded, exceeding a total of $54 million. Approximately 14,700 individuals have completed training, and of those, more than 10,600 individuals have been placed in full-time employment with an average starting hourly wage of $14.34. This equates to a cumulative job placement rate of nearly 72 percent of graduates.
According to Senior Workforce Development Specialist Isaac Weber, 23 trainees completed the Green for Greene training program in 2017 and 31 completed the program in 2018. Nineteen trainees gained employment in the environmental field with an average hourly wage of $14.18 per hour. Two trainees chose to continue their education, he said.
The City’s Workforce Development and Planning and Development departments worked together to secure the grant. The City has a history of positive partnerships with the EPA, including cooperation on a program that works to assess, clean up and facilitate the development of brownfields within the city of Springfield.
According to Mary Ann Rojas, City of Springfield Workforce Development director, partners in the Missouri Job Center’s implementation of the grant include the Ozark Region Workforce Development Board, Environmental Works, Gerken Environmental, Southwest Missouri Safety Company LLC, C1 Truck Driver Training, Bryan University, and Greenfield Environmental Trust Group Inc.
Additional support was provided by Zone 1 City Councilwoman Phyllis Ferguson, City of Springfield Department of Environmental Services, the Neighborhood Advisory Council, The Drew Lewis Foundation@The Fairbanks, Sunbelt Environmental Services Inc., Keystone Building and Design, Euticals, Vocational Rehabilitation, Kansas State University’s Technical Assistance to Brownfields program, OACAC Head Start, Community Partnership of the Ozarks, Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, Missouri Department of Natural Resources and Preferred Family Healthcare Youth Services.
For more information about the visit, please contact Mary Ann Rojas at 417-887-4343 or Director of Public Information and Civic Engagement Cora Scott at 417-864-1009 (office), 417-380-3352 (cell) or [email protected].