Power program addresses needs

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A new power plant technology program is gaining steam as students head toward enrollment in the fall at Colorado Northwestern Community College.

Program director Ed Winters said residents have shown a lot of interest in the program.

"The partnership between Xcel Energy and Tri-State Generation and Transmission has been great," Winters said. "They are 100 percent behind the program."

The program is designed to answer needs in the power-generation industry, in which an aging work force is nearing retirement and not enough skilled workers are available to fill the jobs. Utility companies need employees with training in mechanics and strong math skills, as well as English and reasoning skills, Winters said.

Craig campus Dean Gene Bilodeau said working closely with the energy partners has helped to identify several academic areas that need to be addressed.

This is reflected in the course offerings, including college algebra, english composition, technical writing, computer applications and human relations.

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