We invited those familiar with the industry to help provide feedback on the week-long course so that we can improve the curriculum for future participants. The curriculum took participants in sequential order on the basics of fiber and optical cable, including network fundamentals, safety, infrastructure and fiber theory. They also learned about the different types of cable, how to splice, system builds, hardware and connectivity, and finally, testing and troubleshooting.
All week, participants told me they especially appreciated the hands-on nature of the training, and the emphasis on identifying and solving specific challenges a technician might encounter in the field. People came away highly motivated to communicate to others the value of a career in fiber optics.
That’s good. Because as demand for high-speed connectivity grows, we’ll need a skilled workforce to build, install and maintain the networks. In fact, the telecommunications industry expects 850,000 new jobs will be needed over the next five years to meet broadband demand. We’re doing our part to train the workforce for tomorrow.
The launch of this training would not be possible without the strong collaboration with AT&T, which is always looking to the future while connecting people today.
“By working together, we can help connect the world by building the best networks for today and tomorrow,” said Trey Rabon, President, AT&T North Carolina. “Our goal is to help create a pipeline of people with skill and knowledge to bring advanced broadband to all communities.”
Both Corning and AT&T will collaborate with local community organizations to recruit trainees from a variety of diverse backgrounds and geographic locations and join forces with community colleges and technical schools on a “train the trainer” program. The intent is for trainees to be ready to fill roles at carriers, construction providers and broadband companies.
Throughout the week of training, two things were clear to everyone in the room: Fiber optics is a great career, and there’s never been a better time to get started in it. I can certainly attest to both points: I’ve been in this business for 25 years, and I can tell you the growth we’re seeing, and the energy around connecting more people and more communities, is like nothing I’ve seen before.
To learn more about the fiber optic training program, please click here.