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  • October 15, 2012. Watch the BOLI-ODOT video, “Real Help for Working Oregonians.”Through supportive services contracts with Cooper Zietz Engineers and the Oregon-Southern Idaho Laborers Employers Training Trust, the BOLI-ODOT Heavy Highway Workforce Development Program provides financial support to apprentices to help them succeed.This program is a joint effort to promote a diverse and well-trained workforce for the heavy highway construction industry.The 8-minute video profiles several apprentices of differing trades whose lives and careers have been positively influenced by the BOLI-ODOT Highway Construction Workforce Development Program.
  • June 6, 2011. Read BOLI Commissioner Brad Avakian’s Message, “Advancing Employment Opportunities for Oregon”. Topics include:
    • The Brad Tracker
    • Updated PWR Rates to Take Effect on July 1st
    • Avakian Wins Passage of Key Pro-Worker Legislation
    • Legislative Update: BOLI Bills still moving as session winds down
  • March 22, 2011. BOLI Awards Final Major Contract Under Highway Workforce Development Program (.pdf) Agreement with ACE Academy rounds out comprehensive effort to remove barriers to employment, to diversify the workforce, and to keep Oregonians on the job.PORTLAND – Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) today announced that it has awarded the Academy for Architecture, Construction & Engineering (ACE Academy) the final major contract under the 2011 BOLI-ODOT Heavy Highway Workforce Development Program.This statewide program will provide $1 million to support services that increase diversity in the highway construction workforce and help Oregonians gain and keep high-skill, living-wage jobs.“Nothing is more important to Oregon’s economy than expanding job opportunities for Oregon’s workers, and that’s what this program is all about,” said BOLI Commissioner Brad Avakian. “I’m particularly excited about our efforts to provide students with early training in the highway trades, and our partnership with ACE will focus on knocking down barriers that have traditionally stood in the way of young women pursuing careers in the construction industry.”Pursuant to its agreement with the state, ACE Academy will receive $19,974 to provide students with two in-depth orientations to highway construction careers, one this month, and one in June. Participating students will receive one-on-one tutoring, career mentoring, and hands-on training with construction repair projects.Previous agreements announced under the BOLI-ODOT program include: a $633,265 contract with Cooper Zeitz to provide training and support services statewide; a $172,870 contract with the Oregon and Southern Idaho Laborers-Employers Training Trust to provide training and support services statewide; a $101,313 contract with Portland Community College to provide training and support in the Portland/METRO region; and a $69,458 contract withPortland Youthbuilders focused on youth pre-apprenticeship services in the Portland/METRO region.

    “Each of these contracts will play an important role in helping us develop a highly qualified construction workforce for the future,” said Oregon Department of Transportation Director Matt Garrett. “This program will open doors for Oregon workers, and it is a key part of our commitment to strengthen our transportation infrastructure and reinforce our economic foundation.”

    The mission of the Bureau of Labor and Industries is to protect employment rights, advance employment opportunities, and protect access to housing and public accommodations free from discrimination.

  • March 11, 2011. The Statesman Journal publishes the article, “Program aims to up interest in apprenticeships
  • February 25, 2011. The Portland Business Journal publishes the article, “Labor bureau issues construction cash“:”Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries has doled out highway money to a contractor that’s helping newer construction trades workers find their way into the field.The bureau on Monday revealed that Portland-based Cooper Zietz Engineers, four of its subcontractors and Portland Youthbuilders will each collect part of $1 million available through the Heavy Highway Workforce Development Program. The program, in which BOLI participates with the Oregon Department of Transportation, will connect current and aspiring Oregon workers, especially women and people of color, with services that support employment in the highway construction trades.Cooper Zietz will work with Lois D. Cohen Associates, Oregon Tradeswomen, NECA-IBEW Electrical Training Centerand Pacific Northwest Carpenters Institute on projects funded by the money. Cooper Zietz and its subcontractors will receive about $633,200.The money for the program comes from federal highway funds. BOLI will announce more contract awards soon.”
  • February 22, 2011. BOLI Commisioner Brad Avakian’s Message discusses the BOLI-ODOT Heavy Highway Workforce Development Program. Read the full article here (pdf)
  • February 14, 2011. BOLI Awards First Contracts to Reduce Barriers to Employment
    Program will help keep Oregonians on the job, recruit and retain women and people of color
    PORTLAND – Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) announced today that Cooper Zietz Engineers, working with four subcontractors, and Portland Youthbuilders have each been awarded a portion of the $1 million available through the BOLI-ODOT Heavy Highway Workforce Development Program. The program will connect current and aspiring Oregon workers, especially women and people of color, with services that support employment in the highway construction trades.“This is priority one for BOLI: helping Oregonians to get and keep high-skill, living-wage jobs,” said State Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, head of BOLI. “We are eager to see the impact of these services on recruitment and retention of women and people of color, helping them to overcome traditional barriers to good jobs and career pathways in construction.”“It is in the best interests of every Oregonian that we build a qualified workforce that can successfully compete in the state marketplace,” said Oregon Department of Transportation Director Matt Garrett. “The BOLI-ODOT Program will help us do that by removing barriers for people who want to enter the highway construction industry.”Cooper Zietz will work with Lois D Cohen Associates, Oregon Tradeswomen, NECA-IBEW Electrical Training Centerand Pacific Northwest Carpenters Institute to provide information to students interested in the highway construction trades, prepare individuals to enter an apprenticeship program, and support apprentices who are starting their careers. The Cooper Zietz contract includes mentoring, travel assistance and child care subsidies that will help Oregonians to prepare for, accept, and maintain employment in construction trades statewide. Cooper Zietz and its subcontractors will receive about $633,200 for services in all five ODOT regions as part of the BOLI-ODOT Program.

    The Portland Youthbuilders contract includes over $69,000 in funding focused on youth pre-apprenticeship services in the Portland/METRO region, including orientations to the trades, career counseling, training in foundational skills and apprenticeship preparation. Portland Youthbuilders is a state-approved pre-apprenticeship program and an AmeriCorps affiliate, qualifying participants to apply for educational assistance to prepare for careers in the trades.

    “The proposals that we are funding will attack recruitment and retention issues from several directions,” Avakian said. “This strategy will bring a range of services to communities around the state, directly enhancing the employment opportunities of Oregonians.”

    BOLI will announce more contract awards soon, including additional services reaching regions outside the Portland Metro Area.