The city of Grove City, the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce and Columbus State Community College have partnered to provide a free logistics job training program for those living or working in Grove City.

The city of Grove City, the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce and Columbus State Community College have partnered to provide a free logistics job training program for those living or working in Grove City.

The program, LogisticsART (Attracting and Retaining Talent), uses a $4.6 million U.S. Department of Labor grant to develop entry-level skills for the logistics industry to train underemployed and unemployed individuals.

An orientation will be held from 1 to 4:30 p.m. on March 7 in the lower level of City Hall, 4035 Broadway.

A background check and a drug test are required for anyone interested in the program.

Applicants must pre-register for orientation by calling Columbus State's Center for Workforce Development at (614) 287-2434.

"These people will graduate with something that is really, really valuable," said city community and business relations officer Don Walters.

Program participants will receive three weeks of classroom and hands-on training. Classroom training prepares participants to qualify as certified logistics associates, recognized by the Manufacturing Skills Standard Council. All of the training is fully funded through a U.S. Department of Labor grant.

The class will contain as many as 25 students. Walters said future classes are planned.

Following class registration, the city and the chamber will work to contact local logistics businesses - such as warehouse and distribution companies - to interview the students once they've graduated, Walters said.

Many of the businesses participated in the city's job fair in October.

"One of the best ways that a city can help itself, its residents and its businesses is by putting the people that want to work in Grove City with the businesses in Grove City that want to hire people," Walters said.

"We continue to look for creative partnerships and programs to keep our labor force at work," Mayor Richard "Ike" Stage said in a written statement. "This program will provide a tremendous career opportunity for Grove City residents looking for a work or career change."

This is the third year of the three-year program funded by the grant, said LogisticsART business representative Tom Holton. The Grove City class will be the 31st of about 47 scheduled.

Holton said he has spoken with other Columbus area businesses that would like to hire logistics employees.

When he approached Grove City's chamber, the city and the chamber agreed to collaborate.

"They have a vision," Holton said.

For more information, visit www.cscc.edu/workforce/logistics.