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National certification program now on Guam

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by Lannie Walker

Guam - A nationally recognized program to certify works in thousands of jobs is now available right here on Guam. Local residents can now stay competitive in an increasingly competitive workforce.

Guamanians now have a helping hand to give them a leg up in the workforce, as Victor Rogers, the Guam Community College's director for continuing education and workforce development, explained a program new to Guam called "Work Keys".  The program designed was designed by ACT - the same folks who developed the widely-used College Aptitude Test - and is used to predict success in the workplace.  It all starts with an indicators test, which Rogers says will let you know if you will likely pass a National Career Readiness Certificate Test, which validates a person's skills.

"The certificate that is recognized by all 50 states really throughout the workforce development community it is the gold standard for assessment tools," Roger explained.

But if you don't pass, he says, "That's OK because we have the software here at GCC called 'KeyTrain', and it allows them to improve their performance. We have it for about a year here on Guam when it's going to be free to the public you get your username and password, and you can do it from home or you can come to GCC."

And Dr. Bert Johnston, education director at the Guam Trades Academy, says not only does it validate one's skills on a national level, it also helps people who aren't sure what career path to take find out where their strengths are. "They haven't made that decision yet where they want to go and this test will help guide them in that decision," he said.

The test recognizes the foundation skills needed in order be successful in over 17,000 jobs. "For many crucial and critical positions on Guam, we need people who are qualified and the most qualified especially in light of the military buildup and all the moving parts that are going to be happening here soon," Dr. Johnston added.

Rogers says the tests are available for free at GCC, the Department of Labor and at the offices of the employment agency Guam Manpower Resources.  More information on the Work Keys program is available at ACT.org.

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