ICC to take over Workforce Network

By Anna Yee

June 13, 2013 Updated Jun 14, 2013 at 10:27 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Gary Freiburger is working towards getting his associates degree, so he can start a new chapter in his life, working in the heating and air conditioning industry.

He lost his previous job when Hostess closed last November.

"Being a foreman at the bakery for 18 years, it was quite a shock," said Freiburger... "but heating and air conditioning, everybody likes to stay cool, and they don't like it when it's cold in the house in the wintertime. So, I think it will be a good business to be in."

Peoria's Workforce Network is paying for all of Freiburger's school books and classes.

He's just the type of candidate Illinois Central College is looking to help when the school takes over the Workforce Network starting July 1st.

"The type of client we would most typically see coming through the Workforce agency, they've lost their job for whatever reason, and they're looking for quick re-employment," said William Tammone, the ICC Provost.

The location for Peoria's Workforce Network services is yet to be determined, although Tammone says they could be held at the North Campus or at the school's Perley Building here in downtown Peoria.

Services will continue at the satellite offices in Woodford, Stark, and Marshall Counties.

Staffing is also up in the air.

However, the program will remain funded by federal dollars and grants, which is enough to keep providing career opportunities to thousands of jobseekers, like Freiburger.

"To be on unemployment and be able to go to school and afford it all, it would pretty much be impossible to be retrained," said Freiburger, "so this just a blessing."

For more information on Workforce Network, visit the website above.

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