ELKINS, W.Va. – The Randolph County Housing Authority had its ribbon cutting for the Learning Center in downtown Elkins Thursday.

The Learning Center is a project of the Randolph Workforce Opportunities in Rural Communities (Randolph-WORC) program. It is located at 125 3rd Street, inside the Common Door and next door to TipTop Coffee.

The Learning Center will offer various adult learning programs—from online, job-specific training classes offered by Eastern CTC to workshops on interviewing and career planning to ACT WorkKeys tests that assess job skills for resume building. Its primary focus is to help people who want to advance in their jobs and careers by expanding their skills, knowledge, and certifications.

Randolph-WORC is partnering with Eastern WV Community and Technical College to provide certification and skill set classes in the Allied Health field, such as Clinical Medical Assistant and Medical Administration. Participants enrolled with Eastern can utilize the Center to take their classes. Job Coaches are also available at the Learning Center to provide individual coaching and help people find jobs once they complete their Eastern classes.

“Our citizens of Randolph County have a place where they can come locally without having to travel an hour and a half or two hours,” explained Jennifer Griggs, who is the Program Manager Randolph WORC Program. “We have computers, we have internet access, and all of that is free, and so we just really want our community to embrace this learning center and embrace the ability to have a place to learn.”

The Learning Center will be open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each week. A weekly calendar is available on the Randolph-WORC website, which lists the workforce classes being offered. The first series of classes will focus on resume building, job searches, and interviewing skills.

In addition to the Learning Center, the Randolph WORC program offers a 2-week “Get Ready!” Course in Wood Product Manufacturing. The next class starts on April 12th, and applications are still being accepted. The Get Ready! Course will provide basic skills and experience for working at one of the local wood product manufacturers. This class is being taught at the WV WoodTech Center.

The Learning Center is a vital part of the Randolph Workforce Development Collaborative funded by the DOL-ETA Workforce Opportunity for Rural Communities (WORC) grant program. Members of the Collaborative include Davis Health System, WV Wood Tech Center, Davis & Elkins College, AHF Products, and the Elkins-Randolph Chamber of Commerce.

To learn more about the Learning Center or the Get Ready! Course, please contact the program at 304) 940-3966 or by visiting the website.

The Learning Center gets most of its funding through a federal grant program. The total cost for this project is $927,943. Approximately $750,000 comes from a Federal U.S. DOL-ETA grant. The other $177,943 comes from non-governmental sources.