About 50 residents gathered at the College of Eastern Idaho’s Yellowstone Training Center for its ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday to celebrate the college’s remodel of the building.
The ceremony provided community members the opportunity to tour the facility at 3950 S. Yellowstone Highway and learn more about the college’s Cybersecurity and Workforce Training programs.
Jeff Sneddon, executive director of CEI’s Workforce Training and Continuing Education division, said the facility has been a good resource for students to gain hands-on learning experience and connect with industry professionals.
“This is a really exciting partnership (with local businesses) so we’re happy for all of you to be here because it takes all of us to make this happen,” Sneddon said.
The CEI Yellowstone Training Center is a remodeled and rented facility that was a former Melaleuca building.
CEI moved its Workforce Training & Continuing Education division to the training center in September 2019. In the spring of 2020, the new Information Assurance & Cybersecurity program started classes at the center.
“The bad news is we ran out of space on campus,” said CEI President Rick Aman. “We’d much rather have these things on campus but we have been too successful.”
Sneddon said the college has been able to train more than 31,000 attendees in the various programs offered by the workforce training program both virtually and in-person since moving the training center. Many of them have been employees at Idaho National Laboratory.
CEI offers training programs in health care; business and professional development; electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilating, and air conditioning apprenticeships; computer technology and cybersecurity. Businesses can also rent rooms to host their own training sessions.
“This college has a long history of successful career and technical education, said CEI cybersecurity chairman Joshua Duersch. “This facility is awesome. We’ve done a lot to make it the best that we can make it.”
Duersch said he expects the college to outgrow the facility as it continues to offer training programs that are becoming more of a demand from employers — such as cybersecurity.
On Oct. 1 and Oct. 2, the training facility will host the Bsides Cyber Security Conference, open to community members for free. Interested individuals can register on the Bsides website at bsidesidahofalls.org.
BSides is an information security conference that provides an opportunity to connect with professionals and novices, featuring workshops, activities and presentations from cyber security experts.
The college is also offering workforce training programs in Rexburg and Salmon, Sneddon said. Driggs is another location that is being considered.