Iowa Central plans student bus service from Alta/Storm Lake to Fort Dodge

Thursday, June 29, 2017

To assist in growing a skilled workforce in Buena Vista County region, Iowa Central is developing a new Highway 7 Corridor Round Trip Bus Service from Alta/Storm Lake to the Iowa Central Career & Technical Campus in Fort Dodge.

Bus service is expected to begin next fall.

The purpose of the new service is to provide people from Buena Vista and Pocahontas counties easier access to the career training opportunities at Iowa Central in Fort Dodge. The bus will stop in Alta, Storm Lake, Newell, Fonda, Pomeroy and Manson daily.

According to data from Iowa Workforce Development local Buena Vista and Pocahontas County high-demand high-wage career openings are in the fields of Health Care Occupations, Agricultural Technology, Computer Networking, Diesel Technology, Electrical/Mechanical Technology, Accounting, Process Technology, Industrial Robotics, Biotechnology, Commercial Truck Driving, Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning Technology and Computer Integrated Fabrication Technology. All of these high-demand high-wage career & technical programs will be more easily accessed by Buena Vista and Pocahontas county residents via the new Iowa Central Highway 7 Corridor Round Trip Bus Service slated to start in the fall 2017 semester.

“The reality is that the majority of local high-demand high-wage jobs in our local Storm Lake Buena Vista/Pocahontas County service area require a career ready certificate or a two year career and technical degree. There really are a number of living wage local jobs in these areas,” states Dan Anderson, Iowa Central Storm Lake Center Director. “We have to get that message out there, not only to adults looking to start a new career, but also to high school students and parents, so they better understand the local career choice diamonds that are available for area residents right in their own backyards.”

Anderson credits the new Bus Service interest — in part — to growing attention on the local high-demand high-wage career program value of a community college education and the rising concern around student debt.

“More adults and local parents are discovering that it’s important to gain local marketable skills and to remain as debt free as possible.” Anderson continues, “Many young adults can’t relocate to a large Career & Technical Training campus due to family, work or financial commitments. The Bus Service will now allow interested adults to be back in their homes each night without the need of reliable transportation and at a very affordable cost.

“I’ve known a number of Storm Lake High School Charter School Bus students who over the years worked a full night shift – slept on the charter bus – attended a 4 semester career technical program to get local marketable skills and are now making a living wage to support their families. It’s amazing what young adults can do when they are motivated, hungry and are given the opportunity. These young adults are our future and the future looks bright,” concludes Anderson. “Now more young adults along the Highway 7 Corridor will have an opportunity to obtain local high-demand living-wage skills sets.”

For more information about gaining an Iowa Central Fort Dodge Round Trip Ticket to a High-Demand High-Wage Career contact Sara Scharf at 1-800-362-2793 Ext. 1005.

Financial Aid for tuition, books and round trip bus transportation is available for qualified applicants.

PACE/GAP Financial Aid is available for those who are eligible. Pick-up an application at the Iowa Central Storm Lake Center office