OAK FOREST, IL–On September 8, 2022, Governor JB Pritzker, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), local officials, and the community announced the reconstruction of Wood Street and Ashland Avenue, which runs through Harvey, Dixmoor, and Riverdale. This 94-million-dollar reconstruction project, set to begin in the spring of 2023, will modernize the 90-year-old infrastructure. Graduates of the South Suburban College (SSC) Highway Construction Careers Training Program (HCCTP), an IDOT initiative, will have the opportunity to be recruited for the project to fulfill the workforce goals of the project.
“The twelve-week Highway Construction Careers Training Program was launched in 2008. The program provides opportunities for minorities, women, and disadvantaged individuals by helping them gain skills that can lead to employment in the trades with high-income potential,” said SSC President Dr. Lynette D Stokes. “Our graduates can start careers as iron workers, electricians, pipefitters, carpenters, laborers, equipment operators, and so much more. The recent corridor project, announced by Governor JB Pritzker, highlights the many opportunities this program can provide students.”
SSC’s pre-apprenticeship program, fully funded through a partnership with IDOT, runs Monday through Friday. Students are paid a stipend for each completed hour of training. “The HCCTP at South Suburban College is now in its twenty-seventh cohort since entering the partnership. The last cohort, who graduated in May 2022, had 100% placement into union apprenticeship programs – that’s something to be proud of! It shows the dedication of our students, South Suburban College, and the many contractors and apprenticeship programs striving to meet the workforce demand to fulfill the goals of Rebuild Illinois, Governor Pritzker’s infrastructure plan,” said HCCTP Coordinator Rebecca Garcia.
The project will revitalize a three-mile stretch between 161st and 138th streets to rebuild the four-lane road, including new gutters, lighting, and curbs. The project will also include the bridge over the Little Calumet River, bike and pedestrian accommodations, a new storm sewer system, and the replacement of municipal water mains. In a previous press release, Gov. Pritzker stated, “This project in the South Suburbs gets right at the heart of a major throughway for the community: Wood Street and Ashland Avenue.”
For information about the program, please visit www.ssc.edu/hcctp or reach the HCCTP Coordinator Rebecca Garcia at (708)225-6004 or via email at RGarcia@ssc.edu. The program is held at SSC’s Oak Forest Center, 16333 South Kilbourn Avenue, Oak Forest, Illinois. For details about SSC’s programs, admissions and registration, please visit ssc.edu or call the Admissions Office at (708) 210-5718, or email AdmissionsQuestions@ssc.edu. Para Información En Español Llame: (708) 210-5740.