SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Southwestern College launched a series of career training classes Tuesday offering students hands-on experience and skills to succeed in several prospective career paths expected to rise in demand over the next few years.
The programs — drone technology and applications, cyber security and fire science technology — are focused on computer and information technology. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job occupations in those sectors are projected to grow 11% from 2019 to 2029 with an additional 521,200 jobs in the market. For firefighters, employment is expected to grow 6% from 2019 to 2029.
“We want to prepare the next generation of young professionals with all the right tools, skills and resources to succeed in their professional careers,” Southwestern Superintendent and President Mark Sanchez said. “As we will have in-person classes in the fall, we want to keep supporting our students through their professional development journey and ensure their prospective workforce is more equitable and accessible for all.”
The new programs are:
— Drone technology and applications program: This first in-person class prepares students for careers in unmanned aircrafts systems. Students can enroll in Southwestern College’s non-credit program to take their first two classes for free and then complete credit courses to earn a certificate recognized by the industry;
— Cyber security program: A 32-unit program that equips students with an additional internship requirement and aims to prepare upcoming cybersecurity specialists; and
— Fire science technology program: Students will have the opportunity to practice fire technology, fire service and fire protection as they prepare for entry-level hiring examinations.
Lorraine Hutchinson, Fire Tech Program Director at Southwestern College, joined KUSI’s Allie Wagner on Good Morning San Diego to discuss more details about this fire program.
Hutchinson retired as a deputy chief after 25 years of working with the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department and was the first African American woman to be promoted to engineer, captain, and battalion chief.