Customized trainings big success at Washington Co. Career Center


Customized training at The Washington County Career Center, Adult Technical Training has been a key to the overall success of this Ohio Technical Center located in Marietta.

 As John Moore, Industrial Programs Coordinator, stated “It’s as simple as talking to the employers and listening for their needs and providing them with the training that is customized to meet those needs.” In the past year, the industrial programs have provided 30+ customized trainings to businesses. The training can last for months or be as short as one-day. The school offers flexibility, with businesses choosing to have training completed at their site or at the school. The school operates two 42 ft. industrial training trailers. All training equipment at the school is built to be mobile, allowing each piece to be used in a lab or be moved to a job site. Moore added, “We are listening to what the employer is asking for and making the training about them and what works for them. The instructor that will be teaching the customized training is brought in very early in the process to develop the training and they are there with the employer every step of the way.” 

Another critical component to the success of customized training is having highly skilled and knowledgeable instructors. The school has built a reputation state-wide for the quality of its training. Moore noted, “Our instructors come to us from a variety of sources, but most have been referred from another instructor.” Each customized training instructor brings with him/her an extensive background in the area they are teaching. They have all worked in the area they specialize in and can provide the employer with an in-depth understanding of the employer’s training needs.  

One customized training client is Kraton Polymers, located in Belpre Ohio. They have utilized the school for the past 12 years for new hire training. Steve Hand, Human Resources Business Partner at Kraton explained why. “The school listens to our needs and with the addition of the outdoor industrial training facility, gives our new hires a realistic training that closely emulates chemical plant work.” Hand also serves on the industrial program advisory board for the school. He believes the advisory board is another key to the schools’ success. “When we, the local manufacturers, make suggestions, the school listens and modifies the curriculum. At the end of the day, we are all looking for well-trained applicants so the better we make the training, the better prepared the students will be when entering the workforce.” 

In the past two years, the school also began offering customized training to area healthcare providers. To date, the school has completed customized training for all three of the major healthcare systems located in the Mid-Ohio Valley as well as over a dozen other providers. Erica Chidester, Medical Programs Manager for Adult Technical Training began the process of building customized training in 2020 with Memorial Health Systems. As Amy Hockenbrocht, Director of Educational Services with MHS explained, “Erica was quick to turn around an example of the curriculum for customized Medical Assistant training. She also identified grant funding options that would allow for training while decreasing the cost to the organization.” Hockenbrocht added, “This training allowed us to invest in our current staff and gives them the opportunity to grow from one level to the next.” Working with the hospital has allowed the school to even better understand the needs of the health system and ensure they are better able to serve the community. This training provides the hospital with an extra added bonus for new hires and existing employees. Jenna Carr, Site Director with Coplin Health Systems, began working with Chidester in 2021 and is currently utilizing the school for Medical Assistant training. Carr explained, “The collaboration with the school has an impact on our community and allows us to better serve our customers. Erica offers not only the training we need but provides us with an alternative schedule for our employees that work full time. This means classes are offered in the evening or on the weekends. The healthcare industry needs skilled employees and the school is working hand-in-hand with us to train quality people to become valued employees.”

The Career Center’s Adult Technical Training Center is located on State Route 676 in Marietta.  More information can be found by visiting or calling 1-740-373-6283.