NEW PHILADELPHIA -- Buckeye Career Center in New Philadelphia is taking a pro-active approach in its ability to train local residents for the oil and gas industry.

Adult Education Director Erin VanFossen said the center is offering SafeLandUSA courses to companies, classes and area residents -- all in preparation for residents to get jobs in the oil and gas industry.

The 8-10 hour course is essential for any employee new to the oil and gas, and petrochem industry that will consistently be working in plant, dockside, onshore or offshore facilities.

This is required for any employee of a company that does exploration, production, drilling and/or refining work for any of the leading operators.

"You have to have SafeLandUSA (class) under your belt, even before you step onto the job site," VanFossen said.

There are five Buckeye Career Center-certified trainers for this course: Roger Cooper, Tom Hackenbracht, John Oliver, Dale Swaldo and Dan Varner.

There is a charge for the course to be taught (either on-site or at the career center) and mileage may also be charged depending on where the class will be located.

VanFossen said some high schools have offered this class to their students in preparation of the oil and gas industry coming to the area. She said they believed it would be beneficial for their students so they had an instructor come to the class.

Class size can consist of 10 to 25 students. In terms of a high school class, the course can be completed in 2 to 5 days, in order to accommodate a school schedule.

In all, they have taught approximately 50 SafeLandUSA classes and VanFossen said they've had a 100 percent passage rate.

Buckeye Career Center also offers other classes related to the oil and gas industry including, Heavy Equipment Operator, Roustabout, General and Construction - OSHA (1 and 30 hours), Globally Harmonized System (GHS), and Job Safety Analysis (JSA).

However, VanFossen said many of the courses, both high school student and adult, available at Buckeye Career Center are related to the oil and gas industry.

She said even the culinary arts program or auto body repair program courses can be related back to the oil and gas industry.

She said they are preparing their students for tomorrow's careers.

To learn more or to schedule a class, call VanFossen at 330-308-5720 or 1-800-227-1665; or visit www.BuckeyeCareerCenter.org.