Rod Jurbina remembers a time, perhaps just 15 years ago, when there wasn’t much to see in parts of Visalia’s industrial park. At the time, he was working for a gas company. “We put in a four-inch plastic gas main in there and I was asking myself, ‘I wonder why they need this here because there’s really nothing out here for now,'” Jurbina said. “And now look what it’s developed into.” In a January economic update, city employees describe an industrial park that is growing substantially. The reason for the growth? The city says it’s multiple factors, including the cost and availability of land, Visalia’s central location in the state, and the expansion of the UPS’ ground hub at this massive facility at Riggin Avenue and Plaza Drive.The city expects UPS will add another 250 jobs but predicts it will also spur new development and more jobs.
As many as 1,000 Central Valley residents could be trained to be software programmers in an expanding program offered in Modesto. Programmers are in sharp demand and often command high salaries. Bay Valley Tech is teaming with the Stanislaus County Office of Education to offer free training – valued at as much as $15,000 – for local residents. Students in the “code academy” learn new programming skills through flexible online courses, peer-based tutoring and weekly in-person classes where they have opportunities to network with local software professionals and hiring managers. Bay Valley Tech says it has also partnered with local companies to provide software professionals as code academy mentors and paid internships for top program graduates.