The Mission of the RETC is to create a sustainable, nimble and innovative center of learning that creates synergies with regional education, industry, and workforce partners to drive the transformation and development of a highly trained and effective workforce in the Pacific Mountain Region and beyond.
The RETC formed in 2009 and initially funded by a Department of Labor WIRED grant through the Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council. The initial concept was to create a center that could adapt to the changing needs of the local economy to ensure that the local workforce continued to be competitive in an ever changing environment. The RETC used the WIRED grant to develop and test pilot programs, many of which have continued to thrive. After the expiry of the WIRED grant, the RETC continued as an independent organization. The center receives funding from a mix of federal and private grants, program revenues, and sponsorships.
Current Major Projects
Smart Grid Workforce Training:
The RETC is a sub-recipient of a 3-year $12 Million Department of Energy Smart Grid Workforce grant awarded to the Pacific Northwest Center of Excellence for Clean Energy. The RETC is creating a Smart Grid Knowledge Portal in collaboration with utilities, manufacturers, colleges, and labor organizations as part of this project.
Tunnel Rescue Training:
The RETC is developing a Tunnel rescue training facility in collaboration with the Satsop Business Park and Seattle Fire Department. The only training facility of its kind in the Western United States, the training area will provide the most realistic training scenarios for fire departments, technical rescue teams, and USAR specialist.
The first week in May, the RETC hosts a construction and manufacturing career day for up to 700 high school juniors and seniors interested in careers in the skilled trades. The day is coupled with continuing education courses for teachers and counselors to help students find apprenticeship opportunities and pursue the “original 4 year degree”.