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Chattanooga State – CCI offer internship program

Posted on Thursday, September 14, 2023 at 9:00 am

-(right to left) Gabby Kobel and Ethan Grider




Colonial Chemical, Inc. is offering a formal apprenticeship program in collaboration with Chattanooga State Community College.

Titled “Colonial Institute,” the program is open to adults 18 and older who are interested in completing coursework necessary for a Chemical Operator Technical Certificate (COTC) in only three semesters.

Those who are enrolled in the coursework and working toward completion of the COTC requirements may be eligible for supervised paid apprenticeships at the Colonial Chemical operations. Completion of the COTC coursework guarantees every applicant a thorough interview process with the potential to join the Colonial Chemical team. COTC coursework may be applied to being awarded an A.A.S. in Chemical Engineering Technology.

All classwork is performed at the Chattanooga State – Kimball campus. Courses include Mathematics for Engineering Technology, Industrial Chemistry, Mechanical Components and Electrical Drives, Process Operations and Process Equipment.

Students who are chosen for this program start at $20/hour for the one semester, 3rd semester they are paid $22/hour and are working 8-hour day shifts for a couple of days and go to school for the rest of the days. The internship program comes as Colonial has a 9% turnover rate and they would like to cut that down.

Once completed and granted a job they start as a Production Utility Operator at $24.50/hr. The steps after are Chemical Operator Levels C ($26.50), B ($28.80) & A ($30.50). Top out is about $42/hour.

CCI has approximately 170 employees.


How are interns selected?

Participants must successfully complete ET 112, Mathematics for Engineering Technology and an interview.

ET 112 classes are October 10 – December 6.


How does the internship work?

Interns earn a Chemical Operator Technical Certificate from Chattanooga State while working at Colonial Chemical.


How can I apply to the internship?

Complete the Chattanooga State admissions process

Enroll in ET 112 for October

Students will be interviewed during the ET 112 course

All students must successfully complete ET 112 to be considered an intern


Do I have to pay tuition to take the college classes?

Yes, all tuition and fees need to be paid. However, there are numerous ways for financial assistance—Tennessee Reconnect or Federal Pell grant. Fees for ET 112 are around $650. Once the paid internship begins, Colonial Chemical will provide last dollar scholarships for interns.