Congratulations to the 11 students receiving certificates from University of Alaska Southeast for completing the industrial construction course. Congratulations also to UAS for entering into the partnership with Coeur Alaska, Tlingit-Haida Central Council, and Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development to offer this course. This instruction is intended to prepare students for employment at the Kensington Mine.
UAS Chancellor John Pugh was quoted on KINY saying that they're hopeful that many, if not all of the graduates will find jobs at the mine. That is my hope as well.
This partnership with UAS and private industry is exactly the kind of thing that needs to be continued and encouraged in our community. We are hearing too often about our young people leaving in part because of a lack of quality employment opportunities. Here is an example of both training and employment in our own town.
Chancellor Pugh was also quoted reporting a record 2,800 students at UAS this fall. This is also wonderful news. A healthy, vibrant, and growing university is an asset to our town and a much needed shot in the arm to our local economy.
UAS has been doing a commendable job of increasing its course offerings to include training that can lead to local employment. The industrial construction course is just one example. I hope UAS will continue to explore more partnerships with industry in order to offer even more training leading to local employment. Keep up the good work.