Precinct Reporter 05 23 2019 E Edition Page A-1

By Dianne Anderson StaffWriter No high school diploma or marketable job skills is not a problem for CET training, where they take the students that couldnt make the cut in high school. Its time to try again. For all students, even those on IEP or 504 disabled plans, the program is able to adjust for extra time and resources, along with modified testing based on comprehension. Best of all, most low- income students will qualify for free through Title IV funding, financial aid, and Pell grants. Weve had a lot of students in the past that do have learning disabilities or cognitive issues, and we work with them, said Pamela Deans, director for the Center for Employment Training. Students coming into the center without a high school diploma or a GED can take the Ability to Benefit Test to access Pell grant and free financing, as well as free GED testing services. As a nonprofit, she said their mission is to train the communityinself-siciency and to get offsocial services. We service the hardest to service, the low income, and previously incarcerated. We are Americans with Disabilities approved for all of our programs, and Veterans approved for all funding. Weve been at this for a long time, she said. Along with wraparound services and referrals, they offer job placement assistance. They recruit and work closely with several local employers and outreach programs, such as John Muir Charter School and Operation New Hope in San Bernardino. She said they will work with a student up to their hours, and extend the hours if they need additional training. They work with each person on a case by case basis. Whatever their needs are, we address their barriers, she said. Other supportive services, such as gas cards or bus passes are available. On average, the programs high skills trainings take from six to nine months to complete. Among the courses offered are automotive specialist, green building construction, HVAC technician, machinist, truck driver, and welding. About 10 percent of students are female, and they hold concentrated outreach through special empowerment workshops, including Welding Like a Girl, which has an open invite for the community to come in and try their welding skills out first hand. Green is the New Pink workshops are also being held to get women into good paying green construction opportunities. We have trendy names to attract women to let them know that they dont have to work retail or fast food. They can be a welder, or in construction. We are actively seeking women in our community, she said. For anyone fresh out of high school, or transitioning from a warehouse job, the choices are lucrative. Free lifetime job placement is available, and students also receive free skills refreshers when needed. CET is a nationally recognized program that contracts, and partners with the county Employment Development Department, and Department of Rehabilitation Services, among others. Of their courses, their truck driving program is the shortest at five months to complete. Other programs run from eight to 10 months. Open enrollment is year round, and both day and evening classes are available. Upon graduation, students can receive their vocational graduation certificate, or industry Memorial Day: Profiles in Courage Your Resource for Over 50 Years The Community's Newspaper - Serving Riverside County, Eastern Los Angeles County & San Bernardino County I wholly disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it - Voltaire Thursday, May 23, 2019 Vol. 54 - No 42 CASA: Black Advocates Needed (See Page A-3) By Dianne Anderson StaffWriter For as long as Jatori Harris can remember, he and his older brother, and his cousin bounced back and forth between relative caregivers, from his great aunt to his grandfather to foster homes, and back to his other aunt. Mostly, it was in-house with family, yet not without challenges. It was dicult. Some of those issues linger into adulthood, but I think life depends on how you view it, he said. The family jumping around was natural for us. Despite an unstable childhood, he has come to terms with the negative aspects over the years by building himself up in a variety of ways. Today, the future is more important than the past. He is a busy dad of a nine-year daughter and a two- year-old son. As people, we dont view where we are, but where we want to be. Im learning patience. I do a lot of self-educating, and listen to motivational speeches throughout the day, he said. As it turned out, he works with foster kids as a career choice, helping youth access wraparound services that are essential to escape cycles of poverty, food insecurity, job services, through foster family support services. Harris, a past board member of CASA, (Court Appointed Special Advocates), said the county has several programs to help foster youth take advantage of college, scholarships, and work opportunities. Some barriers are starting to break down through with opening more positions like his own, where alumni - former foster youth - help other foster youth navigate the system. Its one thing having a worker telling you what to do and you dont relate to them, but weve actually been through it. Thats one of our highlights, said Harris, a peer and family assistant for the Independent Living Program at the County of San Bernardino Children and Family Services. As mentors, they stand in the gap for the foster youth and the social worker. Another goal is getting them connected to all available services, especially from age 21 to 24 as they transition out of foster services. Youth receive training, they learn how to open bank accounts, and life skills to learn how to CET: Free Job Training (Cont. on Page A-2) Women's Business Center Offers Free Coaching By Dianne Anderson StaffWriter Not so long ago, there was a time when women could barely access business counseling, let alone access loans. Joelle Passerello with the Inland Empire Womens Business Center said things have come a long way since entrepreneur Mike Stull founded their program to help women get a break. Since 2003, the IEWBC programs boast a $16 million economic impact on the Inland Empire. The programs year- round workshops and events provide space for small businesses to expand their knowledge base, package up their business ideas, and get help in creating business plans. They come here for direction to boost their experience and knowledge within the business community, said Joelle, a business counselor with IEWBC, and graduate of the CSUSB entrepreneur program. Their Its Your Time workshops are geared specifically for women, and includes three months intensive workshops covering the basics of running a business, along with detailed work for a business plan and financials. Participants complete four or more hours of business counseling, networking or volunteer work. By the end of the course, she said they will have a completed business plan with a good idea of where theyre headed. We help coach them through questions so they know what theyre going into when they go to the loan ice. We help them build that business plan that they can take when they go to get funding, said Passerello, who also completed and graduated the IYT program this week. She said one of their best local success stories is Mariatu Tu Browne, who emigrated from Sierra Leone as a young girl. After completing IEWBC In Your Time program, Browne opened the thriving business, Tu Organics Salon and Spa in Rancho Cucamonga. She did that while working full time as a single mom, and going to school. Passerello said its one of many great success stories coming out of this program. She was able to open her own high-end salon and spa using only all natural ingredients. She was able to start that with the help that we gave her here, Passerello said. IEWBC is a program of Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship at CSUSB, and funded through Small Business Administration. Their latest project, IGNITE! is a three-month program open to both men and women, now welcoming established business owners (Cont. on Page A-5) (Cont. on Page A-2)

Next Page