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Highlands Training Center Anticipating Grand Opening On January 24th

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Highlands Training Center Anticipating Grand Opening On January 24th

Empower Upper Cumberland making swift progress on initiating the Highlands Training Center.

Center Executive Director Ryan Barnhart said the 5,500-square-foot building on Spring Street has space for classrooms to handle the 8-week program that covers resume building, emotional intelligence, and core skills. He said the grant funding was awarded officially in November, and the center is already set to celebrate its grand opening on January 24th.

“The beautiful thing about it is we just stayed positive,” Barnhart said. “Of course, we weren’t sure we were going to be awarded the grant, but we went forward with the assumption that we were bringing all of these options to the table to the Upper Cumberland region and we really, truly believed.”

Barnhart said once the facility officially opens, they will be ready to take their first group of participants into the training program.

Barnhart said through the three-year grant awarded by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, they hope to bring some 1,600 children out of poverty in the region. He said they will accomplish this by getting their parents, guardians, or the kids themselves into the workforce and training.

“And not every participant that comes through Empower UC will need all those tools on that roadmap, but a lot of them will need different areas,” Barnhart said. “So as we got together and worked on all those things to make sure we were presenting everybody with the best possible opportunities at success as we could. Overcoming those barriers such as transportation, childcare, things like that that we know we’d have to help those individuals overcome.”


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