Looking back at our history, we find that AMS made a unique and inspiring decision back in 2016 to collaborate with Santa Clarita’s College of the Canyons (COC) in order to provide free educational classes for AMS employees. According to this 2016 blog, the classes began at COC with the intention of opening up a space on the AMS campus:
“Santa Clarita’s College of the Canyons (COC) and AMS Fulfillment have been working together in this exemplary way for well over a year. Their collaboration, which has been a first between the college and a business, is a win-win for all, benefiting the students, the business, the broader community and the college.
“There are several ways in which these first-of-a-kind collaborations are taking place. The most recent, scheduled to begin in May of 2016, will be a class in beginner Microsoft Excel. These beginner class take place on the COC campus. The future hope of AMS is to continue these classes into intermediate and expert levels, and provide them at the AMS campus location.”
As we know from the blogs that followed, the classes did move to the AMS campus and the company set out to build a true classroom space. The end result was a classroom called ‘Advance My Skills Learning Center’. It was fully outfitted with computers and everything needed. Talking about the classroom, a 2017 blog said:
“The first classes were established to teach the Lean Six Sigma (LSS) Green Belt course, which conveys a business management philosophy that is meant to improve the efficiency of a company. Soon after, AMS and COC began other courses: English as a Second Language, Microsoft Excel, Clerk Mentoring, and finally, a first of its kind Apprenticeship program; all of these in partnership with COC, and all classes open to the public as well as AMS employees.”
The AMS Learning Center became a busy place, with groundbreaking classes going on, including the first in the US Logistics Apprenticeship. Many AMS employees took advantage of the opportunities from 2016 forward. Since some employees found it difficult to come to work an hour early, or stay an hour late, it was decided to hold the classes during paid work time. The AMS Learning Center welcomed classes and celebrations and graduations up until the world was turned upside down with COVID 19.
In early 2020 the pandemic changed everything. The classes were put on hold out of concerns for employee safety. Only the most essential safety training continued. This continued until a few months ago when it seemed the risk was diminishing. We are now in the recovery period and we are returning to the classes. With that return there is some excitement. A few days ago the following message went out to AMS West employees.
ESL (1A/Beginning) is at full capacity! We are not accepting any new applications and interested employees will be placed on a waiting list. We are excited for our Spanish speaking Employees to start their English learning journey with College of the Canyons Summer Session 2022, right here at AMS Learning Center.
We asked Samantha Hicks, Senior Programs Administrator, to tell us a little more about the AMS commitment to learning and training:
“The AMS Learning Center is not some basic boardroom or conference room, furnished with chairs and a table big enough to seat our employees. The AMS Learning Center is a comprehensive collaboration supporting all types of learning styles, with video, audio sharing, wireless content sharing, whiteboarding, chat, screen sharing, and even refreshments. With every Learner having their own computer station, we are “As One” having a true connection and interaction amongst our East Coast Learners and West Coast Learners. The Learning Center gives the right atmosphere to take care of business, while making a good impression at the same time.”
Thank you Samantha! We look forward to future training and learning activities at AMS!