Idaho high schoolers invited to experience simulated aircraft carrier

National Flight Academy Opportunity

High school students interested in experiencing life in the world’s largest simulated aircraft carrier are invited to apply through the end of January to the National Flight Academy for the event to be held June 9-14, 2024. The simulation will take place in Pensacola, Florida.

Availability is limited to 9th, 10th and 11th graders in the coming school year. Ten students will live for six days inside a 102,000 square foot, multi-story facility, surrounded by advanced technology, flight simulators, and virtual-reality games that ignite imagination and encourage learning.

The experience is designed to inspire interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). This is a grant-funded program hosted by the Idaho Transportation Department in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration.

Students interested in applying should visit https://forms.gle/AxNdD8LwaSW5yHpB8

Applications are due by Jan. 30, 2024. For more information, contact Jessika Doglietto at (208) 908-2190 or by email at Jessika.Doglietto@itd.idaho.gov

Students will be in the care of the National Flight Academy staff for the week and will not be permitted to leave. Cost of lodging, meals, and transportation for students is covered through the grant.

 

ICONIC Workforce Development Program Seeks Spring 2023 Applicants for Lewiston

ITD’s workforce development program ICONIC (Idaho Career Opportunities – Next In Construction) is seeking the next batch of construction operators to take part in a month-long training in Lewiston this spring. Heavy equipment operators, cement masons, carpenters, truck drivers and mechanics are some of the main skills that are taught during the course.

Of the 105 class graduates in the past few years, 80% have found careers in the highway construction trades within 45 days of course completion. On average in Idaho, the starting wages in the construction industry is typically around $40,000. Having experience in a construction trade can increase your annual earning by at least 20%.

The Lewiston training course, available to 20 people, will take place from April 17 to May 19. Although the class will be held in Lewiston, enrollment is available to anyone statewide who meets the criteria – at least 18 years of age, having a valid driver’s license, and able to pass a drug test. ITD also offers housing assistance to those coming from out of the region. 

For more information, contact ITD’s Office of Civil Rights at civilrights@itd.idaho.gov  Call/text to (208) 908-2190. Those interested can also access the program brochure at https://itd.idaho.gov/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/OJT-Brouchure-2023.pdf

or apply at https://forms.gle/T8BMtcg7uw8VmTWTA

Idaho wins national workforce award for ICONIC effort

BOISE – Idaho’s Workforce Development program, spearheaded by ITD’s Civil Rights section, recently won a national award for the effort from the U.S. DOT’s Federal Highway Administration. Idaho was one of only three states to win the State Transportation Innovation Council (STIC) award. Idaho’s award was the Idaho Career Opportunities – Next in Construction (ICONIC) training program, held in multiple locations in the Gem State in 2022.

The award was given Oct. 23 during the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) conference in Orlando, Florida.

The ICONIC program was developed to meet a specific need: Idaho is one of the fastest-growing states in the country and has been for several years. This growth has brought a need to rapidly update and improve infrastructure, but the state faced the challenge of finding qualified labor to perform the work. Specifically, skilled heavy equipment operators, carpenters, truck drivers, and concrete/cement masons.

To address the problem, ITD’s Office of Civil Rights, in partnership with the Idaho Workforce Development Council, Idaho Associated General Contractors, Idaho Native American Tribes, Baker Technical Institute, College of Eastern Idaho, and local highway construction contractors, implemented the ICONIC program.

“This program could not have been successful without established partnerships,” ITD Civil Rights Manager Jessika Phillips said.

Although the program has been in existence for a few years, the 2022 version was different in that courses were offered in each corner of the state (Idaho Falls in March/April, Boise in April/May & Coeur d’Alene in June/July). Having multiple locations allowed students to stay close to home and their families during training.  The 2022 program also added hands-on training in multiple trades: heavy equipment operating and concrete cement masonry.

One of the most successful participant locations in 2022 was the ICONIC program delivered to residents in Idaho Falls between March 21 and April 22. Over five weeks and 200+ hours, students received certifications in OSHA-10, forklift, Hazardous Waste Operations Emergency Response, flagging, and first-aid/CPR during in-the-field sessions. Classroom instruction included reading blueprints, construction-applied math, confined spaces, trenching and shoring, securing loads, pre-trip and chains checks, and honing career soft skills.

Students removed, formed, poured, and finished a concrete sidewalk at the Blackfoot Rest Area in partnership with District 5 and District 6 staff. Students replaced old, cracked and damaged concrete to create a sidewalk that is now level and free of obstructions for the traveling public accessing the restroom facilities. Students also learned how to operate loaders, dozers, excavators, and skid steers utilizing simulators and getting behind-the-wheel in a land lab. 

Students networked with contractors on multiple occasions and had the opportunity to demonstrate their skills during Contractor Day. Many students have found employment this way and still work for the contractor to this day.

Fifteen students graduated from this program in 2022.

In the past, female participation has been around 10-15% and minority participation hovered around 20%. During this installment of the program, 40% of those who participated were female and 60% were minorities. Women made up only 11% of the construction industry, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2021 study, while minorities (especially non-Latino/non-Hispanics) are also vastly under-represented.

Eleven of the fifteen graduates were employed in the highway construction industry within 30 days of graduation. More than half of the students have applied to the Idaho Launch Program through the Idaho Workforce Development Council for funding to complete their Commercial Drivers Licenses (CDLs) during the winter-shutdown period this coming fall/winter.

The future for the ICONIC program includes “continuing to build partnerships, seek funding, and grow the program to focus on additional trades within the construction industry and lead the way in equity, safety, mobility, and economic opportunity,” said Phillips.

Your input could help shape how ITD does business with DBEs

The Idaho Transportation Department is seeking your input regarding any disparities evident in the participation of minority-owned businesses working with the department on any projects using federal funds under the Federal Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Program. A DBE is a small business that is at least 51% owned by a minority, female or an economically disadvantaged individual.

Specifically, ITD is trying to determine whether any marketplace barriers exist that make it more difficult for those disadvantaged businesses to compete for ITD contracts and procurements.

ITD commissioned BBC Research & Consulting to conduct the disparity study. The study is done every three years by a third-party vendor to go over the agency’s DBE goal as a whole. To foster equal opportunity and ensure non-discrimination to disadvantaged groups, a goal is set for each federally funded project that will go towards the agency’s overall goal.

The Office of Civil Rights monitors the DBE program and helps set goals on each project.  The disparity study will analyze any barriers that prevent those disadvantaged businesses from getting USDOT funded contracts and any barriers ITD (and the sub-recipients of USDOT funds) have in getting DBEs to participate in USDOT-funded projects.

A pair of public meetings, on Oct. 19 in Boise and Oct. 20 in Coeur d’Alene, will be conducted to gather input. Both in-person and by-phone options will be available.


Boise, ID | Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022

6:00 p.m – 7:30 p.m. MDT

Participation in-person is available at the following location:
ITD Chinden Campus | 11331 W. Chinden Blvd, Boise
Enter through the west side of Building 8 | Long Bridge Room

Participation via phone or Webex is also available:

Oct. 19 – Join Online Webex Meeting

Meeting number (Access Code): 2453 034 2017
Meeting password: fMjJXxyw787

Join by phone at: +1-415-655-0003 US Toll

Meeting will also be broadcast at your local ITD district office.


Coeur d’Alene, ID | Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022

6:00 p.m – 7:30 p.m. PDT

Participation in-person is available at the following location:
600 W Prairie Ave, Coeur d’Alene
Main Conference Room

Participation via phone or Webex is also available:

Oct. 20 – Join Online Webex Meeting

Meeting number (Access Code): 2457 198 7149
Meeting password: m2rJcYi3v5G

Join by phone at: +1-415-655-0003 US Toll

Meeting will also be broadcast at your local ITD district office.


If you have any questions about the disparity study or its implications for ITD, please email Ronnie Winks, DBE Program Coordinator, or phone her at 208-334-8567.

“We invite everyone, internal and external, to come and make a comment about their experience with the DBE program and the DBE goal, including any concerns they have, so the third-party vendor can get a clear and accurate information for this study,” Winks explained.

“The results of this study will impact the DBE goal for the next three years on projects for ITD, and the sub-recipients of USDOT funds, so any and all comments/concerns will make an impact on any future work.”

Public comment sought on plan for Idaho highway rail grade crossings

BOISE – Public input is being sought on the action plan to guide Irail grade crossings on Idaho Highways. Through Jan. 21, members of the public are invited to comment at https://arcg.is/1DqS4b or via the QR code posted below.
QR code to review action plan to guide Irail grade crossings on Idaho Highways
The action plan identifies, analyzes, and develops solutions to issues affecting safety at approximately 1,400 public, highway-rail grade crossings in Idaho.

 

Hands-on construction training and free Commercial Driver’s License offered next spring in East Idaho

 While “Help wanted” signs are everywhere and the skills of the workforce are waning, Idaho’s critical infrastructure will always require regular maintenance. To meet that need, the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) is offering a five-week training program in the spring of 2022 in Eastern Idaho. Applicants selected for the program will receive hands-on training in heavy equipment operating, cement masonry, welding and ironwork, and more. Applicants can also earn a free Commercial Driver’s License.

Now in its fourth year, 75% of the program’s graduates have obtained employment with companies in the industry.

ITD will start accepting applications up until November 30 or until the program is filled. Please submit a resume and letter of interest to onthejobIdaho@gmail.com or by mail to 3311 W. State Street, Boise, ID  83703.

Applicants must be at least 21, hold a valid driver’s license, and must be able to pass a drug screening and DOT physical. No prior construction experience is necessary. Women, veterans, and minorities are strongly encouraged to apply.

For more information, please contact Jessika Phillips by email at Jessika.Phillips@itd.idaho.gov or by calling (208) 334-8152.

ITD receives funding through the Federal Highway Administration for this industry-leading program.

 

ITD seeks feedback on draft Americans with Disabilities Act Transition Plan update

As the Idaho Transportation Department updates its Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan, the public is encouraged to learn more about plans to invest nearly $35 million into projects and services over the next 15 years.

ADA Transition is the process of eliminating accessibility barriers to existing pedestrian infrastructure on the state highway system. It also helps identify programs that fund improvements through a coordinated effort with local highway districts and other municipalities.

In an effort to gather feedback about the plan, ITD will host an online survey as part of a 30-day public comment period that begins Sept. 17. The survey can be accessed at itd.idaho.gov/planning by clicking on the link. The survey is available 24 hours a day.

Staff will also hold a virtual public information meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 28 at 6:00 p.m. Mountain time. 
You can find the meeting link posted online at itd.idaho.gov/planning or by emailing ADA@itd.idaho.gov.

Comments and feedback shared during this public involvement phase will be incorporated into a draft ADA Transition Plan, that will become official after review and approval by the Federal Highway Administration and Idaho Transportation Board later this fall.

For questions or to learn more about ADA Transition, please email ADA@itd.idaho.gov or call (208)332-7823.

Disadvantage Business Enterprise Program Seeks Public Input on Draft Federal Transit Administration DBE Methodology

virtual meeting

The Disadvantage Business Enterprise (DBE) program works to provide a level playing field for women-owned and minority-owned under-represented businesses on federally funded transportation design and construction projects.  

The Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) is currently working on the Federal Transit Administration DBE Methodology review and approval process, and is seeking public comment on the draft proposal.  

The comment period will begin Monday, Dec. 7, 2020 and ends on Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021.   

ITD will be holding a virtual meeting during the comment period on Thursday, Dec. 10, 4:00 – 5:30 pm (MST). 

“The purpose of the virtual meeting is to provide the public information on how we determined the proposed DBE methodology and answer any questions or concerns the public may have regarding the draft proposal,” said DBE Program Coordinator Ester Ceja. 

If you have any questions, concerns, or program comments contact Ester at 208.334.8567 or Ester.Ceja@itd.idaho.gov  

DBE Public Comment Document

WebEx Meeting Instructions

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program seeks input on plan, sets public-meeting schedule

Public comment to help guide ITD’s Disadvantage Business Enterprise (DBE) program with its multi-year methodology is being sought through August 24. The DBE program works to provide a level playing field for minority-owned or under-represented businesses in the design and construction of federally funded transportation projects.
Due to Covid-19, two virtual meetings will be held online. The virtual meeting log in and call-in instructions can be found below. The DBE document for public review can also be found below.
The two online public meetings are scheduled for:
July 29 from 4-5:30 p.m. (MST)/3-4:30 p.m. (PST) DONE
Aug. 6 from 5-6:30 p.m. (MST)/4-5:30 p.m. (PST)
If you have any questions, concerns, or program comments, please contact Ester Ceja at (208) 334-8567 or Ester.Ceja@itd.idaho.gov