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Caltrans and Cal State Long Beach Team Up to Launch Training Program for State's Transportation Construction Industry


Program Will Ensure Materials Quality Testing Techs Ready, Available for Influx of SB 1 Funds

Date: July 10, 2017
District: Headquarters
CSULB State Contact: Margo McCall
CSULB Phone: (562) 985-4099
Caltrans Contact: Vanessa Wiseman
Caltrans Phone: (916) 654-2936
Caltrans Contact: Tamie McGowen
Caltrans Phone: (916) 657-5060

SACRAMENTO — Caltrans and California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) are introducing a Joint Training and Certification Program (JTCP) to give participants the tools to increase quality and reduce delays on construction projects throughout the state. Given an expected influx of transportation funding coming from the new transportation bill (SB 1), these projects will need trained technicians at the ready to ensure the quality control of materials being used.

Supported by a $1.3 million interagency agreement with Caltrans, the program will deliver training and certification for materials testing technicians in the specialties of Hot-Mix Asphalt, Soils and Aggregates, and Portland Cement Concrete.

"Caltrans is very excited about the partnership we have cultivated between Cal State Long Beach, our private industry partners and local agencies through this effort. With the recent passage of the new transportation bill, a trained workforce is vital to ensure statewide consistency in materials quality. This training program will benefit both our contracting partners and public agencies."

Malcolm Dougherty, Director, Caltrans

"We are delighted to be working with Caltrans Materials Engineering and Testing Services to provide those in the construction paving industry with the knowledge and skills they need to create quality infrastructure throughout the state."

Shadi Saadeh, Principal Investigator and Associate Professor in Civil Engineering, Cal State Long Beach

"This partnership is a great step in addressing the needs of state and industry in fixing and upgrading the state transportation infrastructure."

Hamid Rahai, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs, College of Engineering, CSULB.

Technicians earn certification by taking a prerequisite test in one area of specialization, followed by in-person class, laboratory and written/practical examination sessions. Caltrans, local agency and contractor personnel attend the same classes, work together and receive equivalent training and certification.

This practice fosters respect within the industry, while generating increased consistency. The JTCP also enables individuals and agencies to verify progress and certifications held by other individuals.

"This type of certification program has been proven in other states to improve competence of materials technicians, which reduces test variability and disruption on public works projects," Our industry is pleased to partner with Caltrans on this innovative and transparent program designed to hold both industry and agency technicians accountable to meeting the latest standards of excellence."

Russell W. Snyder, Executive Director, California Asphalt Pavement Association.

Eight construction trade associations proposed creation of the program in a 2014 letter to State Transportation Secretary Brian Kelly. Overseen by Caltrans, the Federal Highway Administration, academia and industry, the program is designed for all technicians involved in the transportation construction industry throughout California.

Administered by Cal State Long Beach, the program will offer in-person classes at its campus and San Jose State University beginning in December. For more information or to begin training, visit the Joint Training and Certification Program website.

Caltrans is committed to increasing procurement opportunities for new and limited contracting small business enterprises, including, but not limited to, those owned by women, minority, disabled veterans, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and other disadvantaged groups, in all the department's transportation programs, including, but not limited to, state road repairs, bridge repair and maintenance, trade corridors, congestion commute corridors, and local partnerships.

About Caltrans Materials Engineering and Testing Services

Caltrans Materials Engineering and Testing Services (METS) conducts specialized laboratory and field testing, provides inspections and gives expert advice on all phases of transportation engineering involving materials and manufactured products. METS manages the statewide Independent Assurance Program for Caltrans. METS also provides technical expertise for the development of statewide standards, guidelines and procedure manuals.

About the CSULB College of Engineering

The Cal State Long Beach College of Engineering offers a full array of programs to help launch or expand engineering careers. From traditional undergraduate degrees in 11 different engineering disciplines -- including the newly launched Biomedical Engineering major -- to master's degrees in 13 disciplines, minors in five subject areas and an interdisciplinary Ph.D., Cal State Long Beach is known for offering hands-on practical learning experiences to supplement theoretical foundations. For more information, visit the College of Engineering website.

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