joann

Left Front: Jorge Zegarra, Left Back, Bruce Nicotero, Right, Natalie, Culver-Dockins

Visalia (DWM) – “My goal is to offer the training programs which meet employer’s needs and to understand what employers expect, I need to continue to invest my time in learning and have an intimate knowledge of their operations.” Natalie Culver-Dockins, Dean of Workforce Development, Fresno City College visited Jo-Ann Fabrics West Coast Distribution Center, located in Visalia, CA to acquire a deeper understanding of the skill requirements of employees who work in Distribution Centers.

A recent trip to the Jo-Ann Stores West Coast Distribution Center, Visalia coordinated by Gurminder Sangha, DSN – Advanced Manufacturing created a unique opportunity for Natalie Culver-Dockins, and Jorje Zegarra, Director, Business, Industry, and Community Service, COS to spend time with Bruce Nicotero, General Manger of Jo-Ann Stores, West Coast Distribution Center and learn about the skills requirements for his workforce.

“I was able to spend several hours with Mr. Nicotero, and not only was I impressed with his enthusiasm and openness, he provided a good explanation of the internal career pathways and skills requirements for each of the jobs up to General Manager. I was amazed to see the technology used for order fulfillment process where employees used Voice Picking or Voice Directed Warehousing.”

Natalie further stressed on the importance and willingness of the employers such as Mr. Nicotero to open their facilities and spend one-on-one time to help educators understand what is needed in order to develop the right training programs to address the skills gap.

Collaboration is the key and this tour arranged by “Mr. G”, DSN – Advanced Manufacturing was a perfect example of true collaboration between Educators & Employers working together to solve the skills gap.


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