DRA Chairman Chris Caldwell Visits Madisonville Community College to Discuss Workforce Development

July 08, 2020

MADISONVILLE, KY – Delta Regional Authority (DRA) Federal Co-Chairman Chris Caldwell today visited with Madisonville Community College (MCC) administration, faculty, students, and industry partners to discuss workforce development in Kentucky’s Delta Region and two MCC initiatives, a lineman training program and an interprofessional healthcare simulation training home.  

MCC was awarded a States’ Economic Development Assistance Program (SEDAP) grant through the DRA and a Workforce Opportunity for Rural Communities (WORC) grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (ETA) in partnership with the DRA.  The SEDAP initiative provides direct investment into community-based and regional projects that address the DRA’s congressional mandated funding priorities:  basic public infrastructure, transportation infrastructure, workforce development, and small business development with an emphasis on entrepreneurship.  The WORC initiative enables impacted communities to develop local and regional workforce development solutions aligned with existing economic development strategies and community partnerships to promote new, sustainable job opportunities and long-term economic vitality. 

“As the economy improves and jobs move into Western Kentucky, the demand for highly skilled labor continues to grow,” said DRA Federal Co-Chairman Chris Caldwell.  “The initiatives at MCC helps meet this demand by adapting academia’s workforce development programming to meet industry needs, and I am proud to support these excellent initiatives designed to get hundreds of Kentuckians back to work.”

The MCC lineman initiative delivers a four-week Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) training course to meet the large growing demand for transportation professionals in the colleges’ western Kentucky service area.  Because utility companies require linemen to hold the CDL as a condition of employment, collaborating to deliver both lineman and CDL training in one location creates an effective one-stop shop for individuals seeking employment as linemen.  The project plans to train 223 residents from 6 counties in Kentucky:  Henderson, Hopkins, McLean, Muhlenberg, Union, and Webster.

The MCC interprofessional healthcare simulation home trains hospital staff, nurses, therapists, EMTs, and allied health students for at-home patient care.  With the simulation home, students and newly employed healthcare workers can learn in an environment not critical to patients. 

About the Delta Regional Authority
The Delta Regional Authority (DRA) is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to promote and encourage the economic development of the lower Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt.  DRA invests in projects supporting transportation infrastructure, basic public infrastructure, workforce training, and business development.  DRA’s mission is to help create jobs, build communities, and improve the lives of those who reside in the 252 counties and parishes of the eight-state region.  Learn more at dra.gov

DRA Media Contact:
Shawna Blair
Director of Communications and Public Engagement