Goodwill Industries of Central Oklahoma recently opened the only virtual reality training center of its kind in the state. It will offer new classes and training programs that utilize VR equipment to teach both forklift training and job interviewing skills.
The Forklift Certification Training Program uses virtual reality to equip students with the skills necessary to become a certified standup counterbalance forklift driver. The training software allows students to practice these skills in real-time and provide a safer transition into the workplace where forklift drivers are needed.
“We are extremely excited to be bringing these programs to the Central Oklahoma community,” said Lisa Dillon, Goodwill Vice President of Workforce Development. “We really believe that programs like this training center will help those trying to get back on their feet.”
The training center will also offer virtual reality interviews to help justice-involved individuals navigate questions that may be asked during a job interview. Participants can practice mock interviews and receive career counseling through a 3D-immersive experience using Oculus headsets.
“Programs like these really allow us to stay up to date with the needs of those we serve,” said Amara Lett, Goodwill’s Director of Training and Employment Services. “We always want to be sure that we are helping people in our community overcome challenges and stay competitive in the modern job market, and we really believe that this training center is going to help us do that.”
The Forklift Certification Training Program is funded in part through a competitive $100,000 United Way Grant, while the immersive-interview experience is paid for with a $20,000 grant from Goodwill International. Goodwill Industries of Central Oklahoma is one of only six Goodwill organizations internationally to receive this grant.