The Northwest Railroad Institute is the brainchild of the International Air and Hospitality Academy in Vancouver, Wash., and was created to address the need for more workers in the freight rail industry. The six-month certificate program has a curriculum developed by railroad executives, according to this article, and will cover railroad safety and operations. Compensation for entry-level rail employees is about $40,000 and experienced workers can earn an average of $73,000, according to the Association of American Railroads.

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