Montana Veteran Finds New Purpose and Support from 2-year College

Share Article

A Montana state grant funded two-year program, RevUp Montana, makes it possible for veterans to enter the workforce more quickly and with a higher return on investment than a traditional 4-year degree.

This means that students are completing their education at a lower out-of-pocket cost, employers are seeing more high-skilled workers entering the workforce quickly, and students are earning more money once they secure a position after graduation.

After twelve years of honorable service in the Army and five deployments overseas, Blake Thompson found himself in a challenging position.

“I decided I needed a new career to support my family and wanted to use my G.I. benefits to learn new skills. Since Kalispell, Montana is my home, I wanted to see what Flathead Valley Community College (FVCC) had to offer," said Thompson.

"I decided to do two programs at FVCC, Welding Inspection Technology and Industrial Machine Technology. I worked with RevUp Montana’s Workforce Navigator, Will Richards, to plan my time at FVCC to get done as quickly as possible so I could get back into the workforce.”

“My focus is ensuring FVCC students get the support they need to be successful students, and later successful employees. Blake and I worked together to make an academic plan for his time at FVCC. He will make a great employee after he graduates in May,” said Richards.

“The RevUp Montana Program is a grant program funded through the US Department of Labor,” explains RevUp Montana Executive Director, Matt Springer. “The program has a primary focus of helping to improve college programs, but also radically changing the way we offer two-year education in the state to help close the skills gap and improve return on investment for students.”

Return on investment was the primary catalyst for Thompson’s choice to enter FVCC Welding Technology Program, “Once I complete my education goals here at FVCC, I know that I’m going to be prepared to enter the workforce and be competitive in the labor market.”

“Not only are students able to afford this delivery system of higher education more easily, RevUp Montana program graduates earn, on average, $6,000 more per year than Bachelor’s graduates,” says Springer. “This means that students are completing their education at a lower out-of-pocket cost, employers are seeing more high-skilled workers entering the workforce quickly, and students are earning more money once they secure a position after graduation. It’s a win for students, Montana’s 2-year Colleges, the Montana Department of Labor and Industry and for Montana’s employers.”

About RevUp Montana

RevUp Montana is a workforce project supported by a $25 million dollar grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. RevUp Montana creates short-term degree, certificate and apprenticeship programs that lead students into high-wage, high-demand jobs in Montana. Filling these jobs with skilled, experienced workers will help increase employment, strengthen Montana businesses, and grow our economy.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Matt Springer
@RevupMontana
since: 10/2015
Follow >
Visit website