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Ohio College to Offer Training Program for Future Utility Workers

The Power Systems Institute is a two-year program that combines hands-on utility skills at a CEI training facility with technical coursework at Tri-C.

The Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company (CEI), a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp., is partnering with Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) to reinstate its award-winning program to train the next generation of utility line and substation workers. 

The Power Systems Institute is a two-year program that combines hands-on utility skills at a CEI training facility with technical coursework at Tri-C.  Program graduates will earn an Associate of Technical Studies degree with a focus on electric power utility technology. 

"The Power Systems Institute already has provided CEI with more than 220 highly qualified employees who are working in the field today, using the training they received from this unique program to help keep the lights on for our customers," said John E. Skory, regional president of CEI.  "As a graduate of Tri-C, I am proud that we are able to renew this innovative partnership that provides a great opportunity for someone looking for a career in the utility industry."

"This program is an example of business and education coming together to address a workforce issue that ultimately will benefit the entire region," said Tri-C president Alex Johnson.  "The Power Systems Institute will train FirstEnergy's future utility workers who will be needed to help keep power flowing to homes and businesses throughout northeast Ohio for years to come."

FirstEnergy originally introduced the PSI in 2000 as a way to help replace retiring line workers.  Programs were established at colleges throughout the company's six-state service area, including Tri-C.  With the economic downturn, in 2011 most of the PSI programs were placed on hold because projected hiring needs did not support bringing in new students.  As future manpower needs at FirstEnergy were re-evaluated, the decision was made to reinstate the PSI program, targeting a fall of 2015 enrollment class.

Program openings are limited, and applicants will be assessed through a competitive, multi-step process.  An orientation program for prospective candidates will take place Saturday, December 13, 2014, from 10 a.m. to noon at Tri-C's Metro Campus Theatre, 2900 Community College Ave., Cleveland.  More information is available at www.firstenergycorp.com/psi or by calling 800-829-6801.

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