"Workforce Education at Green River was VERY instrumental in allowing me to go back to school, and I'm grateful for all the assistance I received and continue to receive." - Genie L, Green River Student

"Make sure you talk to Workforce Education...They can help in many ways to make things go smoothly and make sense." - Chris S, Green River Student

"Workforce Education...will embrace you and lend a helping hand with open hearts." Elsie Q, Green River Student

"Workforce Education has been there for me since day one!" - Jenny S, Green River student

Nov 27, 2012

Student Success Profile: Nicole Rubia

Today's blog post features a fascinating Q and A with Nicole Rubia. Nicole is a Workforce Education student at Green River. She's enrolled in the college's rigorous Court Reporting program which, depending on the area of emphasis, prepares students for careers in Closed Captioning, Medical Stenoscriptionist, and Court Reporting.

Nicole Rubia
Hi Nicole. Can you describe for us what being a student in the Court Reporting program is like?

Nicole: It's a very challenging, fast-paced program and all of your assignments have to be at 98% or better. I like to compare it to learning a foreign language. It's a lot of practice, repetition and muscle memory because at higher speeds your muscles will react before your brain can catch up. The end-goal testing speed for the Court Reporting program is 225 WORDS PER MINUTE, after all! I'm a person who really thrives on challenges, so I find it exciting. I find that even with an extensive class time, I'm on my machine 2-3 hours a day, especially on days when I don't have class. I try to get in 30 minutes of practice first thing in the morning before heading to school, another 30 minutes before I go to bed at night and one practice session when I get home on days I don't have a shorthand class. I tend to practice more on weekends. It sounds like a lot but I've managed to find a good balance between being a mom, participating in Work Study, staying on top of my classes and making time for practicing stenography.

Can you tell us the story of how you decided to choose this as a field of study?

Nicole: I have a strong legal background. I started as an Investigator for The Public Defender's Association in King County, and then I went into Civil Litigation as a Complex Litigation Paralegal with a focus in Construction Defect and Personal Injury. The hours were starting to take a toll on me and I'd always wanted to go into Court Reporting and further my education, but as a single parent I didn't think going to school was an option. This past April I had a day off and went to the Green River Community College website to look into the Court Reporting program and found out about a Go 2 College Free funding workshop (put on by Workforce Education). I signed up and went that same day. I left the workshop enrolled and registered for classes for the upcoming quarter, with my tuition and books paid for.

What's next after completing your degree?

Nicole: Because of my legal background, I plan on going into freelance court reporting, and hopefully someday becoming an official reporter (for congressional hearings, etc).

Last of all, what advice would you give to new students who are thinking about enrolling in the Court Reporting program?

Nicole: Do your research and get informed! Going back to school is NOT impossible. There are so many resources out there to help you get started and to obtain a degree. Had I known about all the resources sooner, I probably wouldn't have waited as long.
$$$ The following Workforce Education funding programs support Court Reporting at Green River: BFET, Worker Retraining, and WorkFirst.

Nov 8, 2012

Prof Tech Profile #11: Aerospace Programs

Today's Prof Tech profile features a brief Q and A with Bob Embrey, who will be talking about three exciting new Aerospace training programs now available at Green River.

Bob Embrey
Hi Bob. Thanks for joining us on the blog. To start, can you tell us the story of how Aerospace came to Green River?

BOB: In 2010 Boeing and companies in the aerospace supply chain began work with the Washington State Community College system to align curriculum more closely with industry needs. The first step was to examine aerospace and manufacturing curriculum already in place around the state and then make recommendations. After an exhaustive tour, the consensus was that two-year degrees – while highly encouraged along with four-year and graduate education – actually train well beyond what entry level candidates need to know. From that came the recommendation for short-term education and training programs, perhaps in the form of stackable certificates. Next, the governor’s office acknowledged this vital piece of the workforce training continuum and provided grant funds dedicated to the development of short-term aerospace training programs. Green River Community College proposed a plan to deliver three brand new certificate programs and in early 2012 the college went from concept to classroom in 100 days with the help of several industry partners and highly committed faculty.

There are currently three different Aerospace certificate programs: Precision Machining, Machine Maintenance, and Quality Assurance. How can prospective students determine what certificate pathway is best for them?

BOB: A good way to determine the best pathway is to match your interests and background with the program. If you have strong interest you’ll stay motivated, and if your background aligns in the least bit you’ll come across that much better on a resume’. Getting a job involves three keys: 1) knowledge and skills, 2) personality, and 3) experience. The college provides the knowledge and skill training and the individual brings the other 2/3 of the equation, so matching your interests and background with a particular program is significant to success. Prospective students can learn more about the typical work in each of these programs by visiting greenriver.edu/aerospace and checking the News and Resources page. In addition, here are some videos here and here that might help in the decision process.

The future of Aerospace looks bright. What kinds of jobs might Aerospace training at Green River prepare students for?

BOB: Background and experience play a large role in job positioning. Here are some typical jobs for which these programs help prepare:
  • Principles of Precision Machining will prepare students for entry level positions as Assemblers and Fabricators, Machinist’s Assistants, Metal Workers, Machine Operators, and more.
  • Machine Maintenance will prepare students for entry level positions as Industrial Machinery Mechanics, Facilities/Machinery Maintenance workers, General Maintenance and Repair Workers, Maintenance Technicians, Building Maintenance Technician, Industrial Maintenance Technician, and more.
  • Quality Assurance will prepare students for entry level positions as Quality Inspectors, Testers, Samplers, Quality Assurance Technicians, Quality Systems Assistants, Quality Managers, Quality Specialist, Quality Analyst, and more.
$$$ The following Workforce Education funding programs support Aerospace pathways at Green River: BFET, Worker Retraining, and WorkFirst.