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The City’s Director of Public Works, Suzette Robinson, announced a new apprenticeship program available to Evanston residents who hope to work for the City’s Public Works Department. The program is available to Evanston residents who have participated in the Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program for at least two years, have a high school diploma and an Illinois driver’s license, are at least 18 years old, and commit to completing the program.

Apprenticeships last two years, broken down into six-month phases. At the end of the program, an apprentice is virtually guaranteed a City job, said Ms. Robinson.

Pay starts at $11 per hour for the first six months, but increases in each phase to up to $17 per hour. A full time job at the end pays $24.76 per hour during a probationary 25-28 hours per week phase. If an apprentice completes the probation successfully, the position becomes a permanent union scale position.

During the apprenticeship, the candidate completes an Oakton Community College course in Facilities Management and obtains a certificate. Also, each candidate obtains a Commercial Drivers License (CDL) Class B with air brake endorsement.

“This is fabulous,” said Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward. “I had no idea” we were doing this.
“Ideally, we’d like this in place to start in the fall,” said Ms. Robinson.