From thenorthwestern.com: “Job placements high for some FVTC graduates” — It didn’t take Jenna Gehring long to find employment after she graduated from Fox Valley Technical College.

She landed a job with Aerotek, a professional employment agency in Appleton, following graduation in May of 2010 when she received a two-year degree in marketing.

“I had heard a lot of good things about the marketing program at Fox Valley Tech and that it could open up a lot of opportunities and a broad range of jobs,” said Gehring, who attended the FVTC Riverside Campus in Oshkosh. “I also heard there were some excellent professors.”

She isn’t alone in finding employment in an economy that has yet to regain a lot of its robustness since the recession struck in 2008.

Graduates who attended the four FVTC sites in Oshkosh — Riverside Campus, Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center, S. J. Spanbauer Center and FABTECH Training Center — have experienced a very high rate of employment.

In some programs, every graduate in the 2010-2011 academic year found a job after graduation. Programs with 100 percent placement of graduates included pilot training, aircraft electronics, metal fabricating and nursing.

“I think first and foremost it says we are really connected to the employers in our region,” said Chris Matheny, vice president of Instruction at FVTC. “Each of our programs has advisory committees made up of individuals, who are in industry in a particular career sector. They work in the field every day, so they know exactly the skill sets that our graduates will need in order to be successful in their industry.”

The annual Graduate Employment Research Report revealed a record 29 FVTC programs in its district reported 100 percent job placement for the 2010-2011 academic year, said Chris Jossart, a spokesperson for FVTC. In all, 88 percent of the college’s graduates were employed within six moths of graduation, up from 85 percent reported in the same survey in 2011.

Before the economic crash of 2008, FVTC averaged more than a 90 percent job placement rate for its graduates, based on the same data.

Matheny said the goal is to continue to strengthen employment opportunities FVTC graduates.

“The pride that we have is really based in the college’s mission to train a skilled work force for our regional economy,” Matheny said.

Jossart said FVTC has a Student Employment Services Department, which helps students prepare for the workforce and learn where the job leads are located.

Oshkosh resident Steve Lemmens was able to upgrade his job skills through training at FVTC’s Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center on Poberezny Road.

Lemmens said he had a job at Muza Metal in Oshkosh and the opportunity came up for him to go back to school to improve his jobs skills. He graduated from FVTC in the spring of last year with a degree in welding and metal fabrication.

He said the degree opened up more opportunities at Muza Metal.

“I wanted to advance and learn more and upgrade my skills so I could be more valuable to Muza Metal,” Lemmens said. “It was a sense of accomplishment for me and I’m glad that I went back to school. I got a good education at Fox Valley Tech.”

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