South Central Career Center in West Plains offers job training for higher-paying jobs

Students learn welding at South Central Career Center
Students learn welding at South Central Career Center(KYTV)
Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 6:06 PM CDT
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WEST PLAINS, Mo. (KY3) - Drive around just about anywhere in the Ozarks right now, and you’ll see “help wanted” signs posted in the windows of many businesses.

As businesses reopen or gear back up to full capacity, jobs are plentiful. For those who are seeking jobs with benefits, or jobs that pay above minimum wage, many area agencies offer specialized training at little or no cost to students.

South Central Career Center in West Plains is one of those agencies. The center offers training in multiple areas, ranging from nursing to cooking to welding. According to the assistant director in charge of adult learning, Josh Cotter, the areas most in demand right now are practical nursing, welding, and surgical technology.

“Especially right now when folks are getting back to work and really getting excited about the next chapter, they can retrain if they want to and start a new career at any time and really make very good wages for this area,” said Cotter.

Cotter said he is especially proud of students like Johnathan Rowlett, who is only 21-years-old, and planning to buy a house this year. Rowlett was only a few hours from receiving his associate’s degree in general studies when he decided to enroll in SCCC’s welding class. He is still a week from graduating at SCCC, but already is working at a welding job at a large manufacturing company in West Plains.

“I believe that I”m making more money now than what I would’ve if I had just gotten my associates in general studies, said Rowlett. “I”m saving for my wedding, coming up in October, and for a house, I”m going to try to put a down-payment on a house around the same time.” Rowlett said his welding class will fulfill his hours needed for his degree.

Cotter says the career center also works with area businesses to help them find and train employees, tailoring programs to fit the business’s needs.

For more information on finding jobs or employees, and other employment resources, visit

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