Oct 9, 2015

Shame on LCCC, Again

When the NIZ was in the planning stages, before we, the unwashed public, knew about it, Lehigh Carbon Community College was already playing ball with the big boys, at the expense of their students. Those compromises started when their dean didn't object to the bus stop being removed from in front of it's Hamilton Street building. The college had no problem with their students walking from the transportation interment camp on 7th, beyond Linden. I phoned their dean at the time, and posted about it here on molovinsky. My next post concerned their willingness sell out to Reilly's plans to own the entire 700 block of Hamilton Street. They justified that compromise by saying that the building no longer served their needs. Now, that Reilly really has slowed down, seems that the building is again adequate enough. Although J.B. put on the smiley face about Talen going Jaindl, he's really not a happy baron about that. What has irritated me enough to write this third complaint about LCCC, is their program to train workers for the new NIZ restaurant jobs. I'm a proponent of community colleges, I see them as an opportunity for more students to continue their education. Although, I expect to see a lower bar on student admission standards, I expected that the deans and administration should be professional. Colleges, even community colleges, shouldn't stoop to training peanut vendors for the arena.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Has a decision been made to relocate yet? None of these students should have to pay a penny for parking or worry about safety when going to their cars. Enrollment is down and the board wonders why. LCCC should be able to take their RACP grant with them to a location that best serves the students. The minimum requirements should include free parking, safe atmosphere, and access to public transportation.

Anonymous said...

Here's comes the rising tide.
"Peanut here. Get your red hot peanuts here."

Bernie O'Hare said...

Excellent post. I had no idea that LCCC had allowed Reilly to take control of their own downtown campus. What a difference from what NCC is doing on Bethlehem's south side, where they een have a reading room and have given oway 683,000 books to disadvantaged children.

Anonymous said...

Give me a job. Give me security. Give me a chance to survive. I'm just a poor soul in the unemployment line.

doug_b said...

"What has irritated me enough to write this third complaint about LCCC, is their program to train workers for the new NIZ restaurant jobs."

So a HS education isn't enough to be a waiter or dishwasher? There were a ton of private schools that taught culinary arts. Most are out of business - they sucked up the student loan money, and the graduates found out they could only get $12/hr jobs as line cooks.

Anonymous said...

There is probably money available so the college will of course take it because the thinking goes "if we don't, someone else will" and they can't have that.

You expect shame and you're not going to get it. For them, it's a way to balance a budget, to keep people employed.

I personally think it's pathetic that we're deluded to think these jobs are worthwhile. If you're of the LVEDC crowd who believe any job is a good job, regardless of quality you're fine with these NIZ job classes.

If you're a realist, these jobs aren't worth a damn - nobody is improving their lives with a part time job, with terrible hours, making barely above minimum wage.

michael molovinsky said...

bernie@8:49, to my knowledge lccc has not yet sold the building, but has set the plan in motion. "We're fortunate to have our building full, and we don't have to leave the Donley Center," college President Ann D. Bieber said Monday. "But if we want to grow, we can't do it at the Donley Center. We believe there is an untapped population [of students] out there that we would like to serve." (statement made this past january) furthermore, they have secured permission from the contributing school districts.

anon@9:34, i also believe that any job, regardless of pay, is better than no job. this post was not meant to demean any job in a NIZ restaurant, including dish washers. it was meant to demean LCCC, which is starting a training program for such work. in addition to such jobs traditionally not requiring professional training, it appears to have a political aspect, more related to the NIZ revitalization myth, than any real job market.

Anonymous said...

Let them work for peanuts, it's better than nothing.

Anonymous said...

"Any job, regardless of pay, is better than no job."

It's ok to think that as a resident and taxpayer but if you're in the business of bringing jobs to the area and training people for jobs, you have to aim higher than the low hanging fruit of that sentence. It's in complete ignorance of the poverty and underemployment that plagues this area. The last thing this area needs is more lackluster jobs being championed by people and organizations that get paid a lot more money than the people who fill the jobs they promote. Training people for them is throwing good money after bad.

You aren't improving your life working a part time job at a restaurant for maybe $9 an hour, especially if that job requires the cost of fuel for the car, cost of child care for single parents. Or if you're desperate you leave the kids in the car while you work like that poor guy in Upper Mac did a few months ago.

I'm tired of hearing that the Lehigh Valley is bringing so many jobs and that everyone should get a pat on the back without a single thought about the quality of those jobs. If all you're bringing are part time jobs in warehouses and the NIZ, it's not that much of a feat.

I'd rather spend the NIZ job training money to get people real degrees and valuable skills instead of training them to be waiters. Why is LCCC teaching mediocrity? Why are we ok with that?


michael molovinsky said...

@10:48, you're combing two unrelated thoughts from my comment of 10:11. i agree that lccc should not be training anybody for such marginal jobs, that was the reason for this post. however, at the same time, in response to 9:34, such jobs are much more honorable than faking a condition for SSI, or being chronically unemployed. they are jobs, which may provide an opportunity to find a better one. @10:48,if you happen to also be 9:34, your point of view has now been well presented, i do not encourage debates in my comment section.

LVCI said...

"Let them work for peanuts, it's better than nothing."

Actually not working may be a better alternative. If one factors in child care, transportation costs or exceeding allowable earnings (if one is receiving some sort of government assistance program such as WIC or unemployment benefits)... working may very well end up costing more then someone could earn from these kind of jobs.

These LCCC NIZ jobs are not the only questionable scheme. CareerLink often will hook people up with a temp agency who is contracted for providing minimum wage jobs. These jobs are limited to a certain number of hours per year (usually this works out to around 9 months with any one company). The scam here is to get people off the dole.

However workers may find themselves in a worse pickle. Unemployment is based on the highest of the last 3 quarters earned before the current one in which someone lost employment. Three quarters works out to 9 months. Depending on when they were let go only 2 quarters may be under consideration. Thus if a temp employer only used them two or three weeks a month (as often is the case) they'd be worse off then before.

Anonymous said...

Is it really to much to expect these enterprising future waiters to walk one lousy block to get their bus? That transfer station has an indoor waiting area, mini-market and a Dunkin' Donuts. I never had that when waiting on 8th and Hamilton in the old days.

Also, the best waitstaff I have ever seen are on cruise ships. Those folks are dying for a good job, happily take their professional training from the cruise lines, then move on to nice restaurants in their home country or anywhere in the world. Nobody in Panama had to be 'educated' in waiting tables.

Local said...

Still, food service people do need to know how to wash their hands and be hygienic around the restaurant. Where should this education be found?

LVCI said...

Where should this education be found?

Gee oh gosh willikers.. how about their employer? This isn't rocket science.

monkey momma said...

I just want to say that I really really loved seeing the Styx quote on this comment thread. It would continue, "...my god I'm hardly alive!" And boy, ain't that the truth for so many NIZ dwellers who don't have an insider's connection to the powers that be.