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September 20, 2016

Rail technician training program provides path to Metro Transit career

Rail technicians overhaul a Metro Transit light-rail vehicle. Job seekers interested in pursuing a career as a Metro Transit light rail technician are invited to apply for a spot in a training program that will get underway later this year. 

Modeled after an industry-first Bus Maintenance technician training program that launched in late-2015, the Light Rail Technician Training Program will put participants on a path toward full-time positions at Metro Transit. 

The program combines one-on-one coaching, customized training, a Metro Transit internship and financial support toward earning an associate’s degree. No prior technician experience is necessary. 

“This program provides a unique opportunity for job seekers who might not otherwise have access to the kinds of careers available at our growing organization,” General Manager Brian Lamb said. “We’re excited to expand on this industry-leading initiative and to continue developing Metro Transit's future workforce.”  

Metro Transit is partnering with Twin Cities R!SE to solicit and screen applicants and to provide signature Personal Empowerment training that will help narrow the field of participants. Applications will be accepted through Saturday, Oct. 29. An open house is also planned for October. 

Up to 40 job seekers will begin Twin Cities R!SE’s empowerment training program in December, and half of these participants will move into on-the-job training beginning in April 2017. 

“Twin Cities R!SE is pleased to partner once again with Metro Transit in a training program that gives participants a meaningful career at no cost to them and a direct pathway out of poverty,” said Tom Streitz, Twin Cities R!SE President and CEO. 

Promising participants will continue in Rail Maintenance internships while enrolled in a customized two-year degree program that positions them for full-time roles as an Electro-Mechanic, Signals or Communications technician. Rail Technicians maintain light-rail vehicles and system support equipment. 

Studies and internships are scheduled to begin in fall 2017 and to continue through mid-2019. As interns, participants will earn $15.50 an hour. Starting pay for Rail Technicians is $25.32 an hour, plus benefits. 

Similar to Bus Maintenance’s Technician program, the Light Rail Technician Training Program also provides Metro Transit an opportunity to build diversity while addressing future workforce needs. Metro Transit’s rail technicians are, on average, 47 years old. The number of technicians is expected to double, from 67 to 133, by 2021 to support the Green and Blue line extensions.  

In August, 19 participants in Bus Maintenance’s program celebrated the completion of the initial phases of that program. These participants are now taking courses at Hennepin Technical College and interning at Metro Transit service garages. 

To apply and learn more visit or Questions about the application and enrollment process can be directed to Twin Cities R!SE at 612-338-0295 or [email protected]. Interested applicants can also visit any Twin Cities R!SE location.

For more information about employment opportunities at Metro Transit and the Metropolitan Council visit

Metro Transit is an operating division of the Metropolitan Council, offering an integrated network of buses, light rail and commuter rail. In 2015, Metro Transit provided 85.8 million rides to customers in the seven-county metro region.  

Contact: Howie Padilla, Public Relations Manager, 612-349-7089, [email protected]  

Twin Cities R!SE is an innovative anti-poverty organization that provides long-term job training and placement designed for those facing the most barriers to employment success and long-term self-sufficiency. Its mission is to transform lives out of poverty through meaningful employment.  

Contact: Stephanie Jones, Marketing and Communications Manager, Twin Cities R!SE, 612-279-5818, [email protected]