February 9, 2011
“Just where are the blue collar jobs? A shred of hope for people out of work is directly linked to Marcellus Shale drilling.”
County officials say Marcellus Shale will “usher in a new era of economic prosperity for years.”
CLEARFIELD, Pa. — It’s an area that has faced big job losses over the last few years.
Job cuts in industries like lumber and powdered metal helped drive unemployment into the double digits in several Northern Alleghenies counties.
But now, officials claim there is new hope for people looking for a blue-collar job.
Marcellus Shale gas wells continue to appear in places like Clearfield County.
Officials said those wells have the potential to put a lot of people to work and each well depends on the work of around 150 companies.
Local technical schools are looking to capitalize on the drilling boom with classes aimed at people interested in the field.
Clearfield County Technical Center is offering commercial drivers license classes, tailored to driving trucks in the Marcellus Shale drilling industry.
They’ve even bought a water truck to help students train.
“Almost immediately we realized this is something that could be boom,” said instructor Bruce Yeckley. “So we needed to get onboard with training and relationships with these companies.”
The six-week program has drawn plenty of interest, from students right out of school to workers reeling from the effects of the recession.
“In the last eight years of my career, I worked for two businesses that went bankrupt,” said student Mark Georgek. “I can’t find a job, but I look at the want ads and there’s plenty of CDL jobs.”
But will the boom last? County officials claim it could last for years and usher in a new era of economic prosperity.
Workers told WJAC-TV they’re just looking for a decent paycheck, a steady career and a job that keeps them close to home.
“If I can get in on the ground floor I can hopefully work my way up,” said Georgek.
Visit the MSC’s “Jobs Portal” to learn more about Marcellus employment opportunities.
MSC’s Guiding Principles: Our Commitment to the Community
· “We strive to attract and retain a talented and engaged local workforce”
What They’re Saying: Responsible Shale Gas Development: MSC’s Guiding Principles In Action
What They’re Saying: Marcellus Shale Helping Small Businesses Reach “The American Dream”