While COVID has upended many things, it hasn’t interfered with learning important skills at the Center for New Americans!
In the late fall of 2020 and early spring of 2021, the Center for New Americans happily offered a general manufacturing and production job class to our students. These two-week classes, part of our STEP (Skills To Employ People) Program, focused on production line work, workplace safety, manufacturing vocabulary, hard and soft skills, and job interview skills.
Teachers Kate and Lindy taught these two-week courses and made it as interactive as possible over Zoom with video tours of cabinetry and food production facilities where students got to see real-life examples of future jobs. Students also worked hard on job interview skills and performed well during the course-end mock interview. “I enjoyed getting to know different students better and learning about their career goals and aspirations,” says Teacher Kate.
Over Zoom, the students did many activities concerning workplace safety, job expectations, and basic math and measuring skills. Teacher Lindy liked this part very much: “I am no math whiz, but it was really fun to teach this and see the students really understand fractions and measurements. Some students may still be working on their English skills, but they have a real head for numbers, so they get to shine during this lesson!”
STEP classes are important ones for our New American students, as they introduce them to the American workforce and equip them with the skills needed to find gainful employment. And STEP works! A handful of students from our classes have already interviewed and accepted jobs at production plants in town, and we couldn’t be more proud of them! Way to work!
Lindy Obach ESL Instructor
LSS Center for New Americans
300 E. 6th St., Sioux Falls, SD 57105