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Utilities Help Themselves by Helping Veterans

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, September 29, 2011

According to the federal government, the unemployment rate for veterans who served after 9-11 is about two percent higher than the national average.  To help vets with job placement, Pacific Gas and Electric and American River College created a class for pre-apprentice utility workers.

Matt Ramey is one of 25 who were accepted into the program. He hit the poles at the SMUD training center with safety harnesses, spiked boots, and a willingness to learn. 

RAMEY: "Having a program like this is great because we have a lot of skill sets as veterans that the public aren't aware of.  So, being able to come out and put those to work is a great opportunity for us and get us out on the jobs and working outside doing a lot of the labor and stuff we like to do."

400 veterans applied to get into the eight week program.

The utilities hope these classes can fill future vacancies. PG&E could lose 40% of its employees to retirement within the next five years.


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