HAZLETON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The future builders of NEPA will get a new place to learn their trade.

The Lackawanna College Hazleton Center held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the launch of its new construction program Wednesday night.

The Lackawanna College Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Program is a 16-week semester college-level course.

The goal is to prepare students for a variety of entry-level jobs in the construction industry such as carpenters, and electricians.

Students earn up to 16 and a half credits when they finish the course.

“We’re looking to train as many people as we can to give opportunities, especially to the Hispanic community,” said George Hayden, President and Owner of the Hayden Power Group.

“The need to get people into the trades is essential not only for this area but in Hazleton for where we are today and across the country this program that Lackawanna has put together is spectacular,” said Joe Perpiglia, President and CEO of Associated Builders and Contractors of Eastern Pennsylvania.

“Hazleton has been built by immigrants, we need to embrace that population and they come with such great skills and training and talents so this is a great program,” said April Harris-Snyder, Center Director of the Lackawanna College Hazleton Center

The great thing about this pre-apprenticeship program is that after the credits are reached, students will be placed directly into the workforce.