The Daily Express

Railroad Conductor Classes Offered by Owens' Center for Development and Training Campus

  MARION -_A new career in the railroad industry can start with a five-week class in railroad freight conductor training through Owens Community College.

  The Railroad Freight Conductor Training program will be offered at Tri-Rivers Career Center in Marion by Owens Community College's Center for Development and Training (CDT).

  The course will meet from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, starting in mid-October. The program includes classroom and hands-on laboratory training.

  Conductor positions are readily available, with a starting salary in the $30,000 range, according to Bill Deffenbaugh, Executive Director of Economic and Workforce development at CDT.

  "The need for conductors is so great, especially in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana, that more than 90 percent of students who have completed similar programs were hired by major railroads," Deffenbaugh explained. One of the area's major railroads, CSX Transportation, has agreed to interview students in the CDT training program during the third week of class.

  The conductor is a position on a typical two-person train crew. It can require long and variable hours and holiday work assignments. Conductors are required to undergo additional training to become a locomotive engineer.

  "We are excited that Owens Community College is offering this program and we expect Owens to be a major source of highly-qualified employees as we move into the future," said Michael Buckner, Director of Staffing for CSX Transportation.

  Enrollment in the Railroad Freight Conductor Training program is open to the public. To register for the training classes, or for more information, call (567) 661-7357 or 1-800-GO-OWENS, Ext. 7357.



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