Cliff Peale reports:
What college student wouldn’t want a $15-an-hour job, asks Dave Dougherty.
Dougherty, the former chief executive officer at Convergys Corp., has formed a new nonprofit group to make that happen.
Called Education at Work, the venture will operate call centers for a client roster that already includes Macy’s and Cincinnati Bell.
Dougherty will pay college students starting at $9 per hour, plus tuition benefits up to $6,000 a year. Students must be taking at least one college class to qualify and the amount depends on their grade point average.
In short, he’s putting profits from the business into the tuition payments. He sees the potential for 5,000 students working in multiple call centers around Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.
“That’s putting a meaningful dent in raising the education level in this community and the job skills level in this community,” said Dougherty, who headed the Cincinnati USA Partnership development group for a year ending in March 2012 after leaving Convergys in 2010.
The new company starts operations as an entire generation of college students is carrying crippling debt, now approaching $1 trillion nationally.
In Ohio, seniors graduating in 2010 carried an average $27,713 in debt, No. 7 in the country, while Kentucky students graduated with average debt of $19,375, ranking No. 43, according to the Project on Student Debt.