Train and gain

Letter carriers and instructors Michael Erdelyi, front, and Travis Holt, back, gather with graduates of the first City Carrier Assistant Academy in Anchorage, AK.

USPS is providing carrier assistants and associates with improved training, part of a broader effort to strengthen workforce development.

The organization has established city carrier assistant (CCA) and rural carrier associate (RCA) academies in all seven areas. The weeklong academies offer classroom training, followed by on-the-job training.

Topics covered include scanning, safety procedures and marketing postal products and services.

“This is the most thorough training process I have ever experienced,” said Kimberly Mbengue, an Indianapolis city carrier assistant in Greater Indiana District, which recently became the first district in Great Lakes Area to open CCA and RCA academies.

Greater Indiana District Manager Todd Hawkins calls the program a “great venture” and thanked the National Association of Letter Carriers and the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association, which helped design the curriculum.

The academies are part of the Field Onboarding Program, which aims to prepare USPS newcomers for their jobs. The program also aligns with the Postal Service’s overall strategy to invest in its workforce.

“We want to give all employees the tools and information they need to do their jobs and meet the needs of our customers,” said Learning and Development Director Susan McKeen.

Travis Holt, a letter carrier who recently served as an instructor at the first CCA academy in Anchorage, AK, said participants were enthusiastic after completing the courses.

“They moved to their stations with emotions ranging from guardedly optimistic to eager and excited,” Holt said.