Los Angeles - -The 72nd Metro Bridge Program concluded Monday, March 18 in the Metro Boardroom as 16 students received certificates of completion following a highly intensive three-week course. The graduates now move forward in their effort to become bus operators.
This class, while the second of 2013, is the first to receive funding from a recently issued Department of Transportation grant. Administered through Community Career Development, Inc., it is one of ten classes slated to be conducted this year.
A host of dignitaries from Metro's executive offices joined the event, led by CEO Art Leahy, who shared his background of having started as a driver with the company before moving upward. Also in the audience were Paul Taylor (Deputy Chief Executive Officer), Frank Alejandro (Chief Operations Officer), Michelle Caldwell (Chief Administrative Services Officer), Hector Guerrero (Director of Operations Central Instruction), Stefan Chasnov (Deputy Executive Officer Human Resources), Steve Jaffe (Interim Executive Officer of Human Resources), and James "Woody" Woodson (Interim Executive Director, Transportation).
Job Training Career Coach Tony Jaramillo expressed his enthusiasm for the class, saying, "I am very proud of these 16; they encouraged me to challenge them more than I have any other classes. One hundred percent passed their Class B commercial permit testing as a result.
The Bridge program offers an alternative way of entering into employment as a bus operator with Metro. Designed to meet the transportation agency's needs, it offers a unique "on-ramp" to success. Bridge training encompasses over 70 hours of contextualized customer service skills, training for transit careers, and lifelong learning skills such as time management, study, and test taking strategies. Additionally, the classroom and field discussions include key bus preparation and DMV commercial permit, testing, and licensing.
The Metro Bridge Program Graduating Class