Soboba and MSJC work on future jobs

Amy Campbell, director of non-credit programs at Mt. San Jacinto College, answers questions after a career workshop was held at the Soboba reservation, Feb. 6. Valley News/Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians photo

Career development has long been an important part of Mt. San Jacinto College’s mission to prepare students for the next chapter of their lives. Through a partnership with the Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians, opportunities at many tribal entities can be met through the college’s newest programs.

Soboba’s tribal administrator Michael Castello said the community college reached out to the tribe last summer. Jerry Livesey is the project lead serving as the liaison for the college and tribe and said it was important for college president Roger Schultz to work with Soboba in order to meet its needs.

“We are responding to what we heard the tribe needed,” Livesey said.

These desires seem to be the same as MSJC’s vision of transforming learners, lives and communities.

“Soboba is one of the largest employers in Riverside County and we offer a wide array of jobs,” Castello said. “Having this partnership with MSJC for our members to gain education and skills really fits into what our needs are as a tribe.”

It is a win-win arrangement as Soboba has about 1,500 positions at the year-old Soboba Casino Resort but only about 100 are filled by tribal members. The proposed program will help those who want to work for the tribe find out what is needed and be able to take specific classes to reach that goal.

A workshop to introduce the program that was secured through a memorandum of understanding between the tribe and the community college was held Feb. 6. Presenters from the college spoke about how certain classes have been designed to meet the needs of specific job positions. Speakers from several tribal entities outlined the type of employees they need and how these college courses will give students the necessary knowledge to be competitive in the hiring process.

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