Guam to Welcome American Samoa Workers for 6-Month Construction Training Program

Friday, February 24, 2012
Office of the Governor of Guam Eddie Bazo Calvo, by Natalie Quinata

Governors Calvo and Tulafono build regional workforce training partnership


February 24, 2012

Guam will welcome 30 participants from American Samoa who will be the first workers to benefit from a regional workforce center created because of the support provided by the Governor of American Samoa to Governor Calvo’s vision for a center where Guamanians and residents of Micronesia can obtain short term training that results in employment. Governor Eddie Baza Calvo has been working with American Samoa Governor Togiola Tulafono to establish a workforce training program that will be made available for both the local community as well as communities throughout the region to prepare for the military realignment and the reconstruction of American Samoa still struggling to recover from the devastating Tsunami it experienced in 2009.

“We really are stronger when we work together and I’m proud to work with Governor Tulafono,” Governor Calvo said.  “We’re both committed to strengthening our workforce and making sure that through a shared vision of utilizing scarce resources together we can both create a workforce center for Guamanians and train workers from American Samoa to return to rebuild their island’s economy.”  Governor Calvo went on to add, “This collaborative partnership provides a model for training programs in a variety of different industries that we plan to make available for the people of Guam and our island neighbors.”  The Governor explained that because of the trust that Governor Tulafono placed in Guam a new regional workforce center has been created for our people.  

Investment for the program is made possible through a $665,000 National Emergency Grant given to American Samoa after a tsunami that devastated the territory in 2009.  The program is public/private partnership between the Government of American Samoa, the Ukudu Workforce Housing and Training Village and the Center for Micronesian Empowerment.  The project is a true collaboration between industry and the government to provide assistance to the people of American Samoa while at the same time creating a lasting workforce development opportunity for the people of Guam and Micronesia.

The 30 students who will call Guam home for the next six months will be arriving tomorrow, February 25, 2012 at the Guam International Airport at 7 p.m.  Acting Governor Ray Tenorio, along with the Chairperson for the Center for Micronesian Empowerment, Maria Connelley and other members of the American Samoan community and Guam, will welcome the students tomorrow evening.

Contact Natalie Quinata at 488-6013 for more information or Jay Merrill at 687-4066.