The Utah legislature this year funded a new rural online initiative helping people to develop skills so they can seek competitive remote jobs without leaving their counties.
This new pilot program has been implemented by USU Extension for residents in Utah’s southern counties.
Paul Hill, a USU Extension associate professor and principal investigator of this rural online initiative, said a new certificate course has been developed.
“The course will help people learn how to professionally work online,” said Hill, “in a setting where they’re working as an online freelancer as well as a remote employee for a company; that could be a small business or a Fortune 500 global corporation.”
Hill said after they meet their skill requirements and earn their certificate, USU Extension will be among those helping to find jobs.
“There is a skill scholarship component built into the funding that allows them to evaluate where they’re at with their skill set, and based on where they need to improve, they can develop those skills with scholarships so they can pay for an online course if they want to become a better grant writer, or paralegal, or learn 3D modeling. And from there, after they’ve developed their skill set, it’s all about marketing.”
Hill said these opportunities will be available for those in the 15 southern Utah counties with the highest level of unemployment.