Rapid Response - Solutions for Economic Transition

Fund Awards Grant for WorkAdvance

April 6, 2011 6:30 a.m.
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CLEVELAND -- A regional jobs initiative, "Towards Employment," plans to launch a sector-focused work force development program with up to $860,000 from the Fund for Our Economic Future  to fund the first year of the new program, which has been named WorkAdvance.

"Towards Employment developed a work force program that is both innovative and collaborative -- two attributes central to northeast Ohio's economic revitalization," said Brad Whitehead, Fund president, in announcing the grant. "Training and retaining talent regionally and connecting talent with employers ultimately improve the economic future of our residents and region."

Towards Employment will lead manufacturing and health-care programs across the region working closely with partners in Cuyahoga County and Mahoning County. The programs will serve both employed and unemployed low-wage workers with a goal of connecting workers to jobs with career tracks.

"By providing the necessary high level of training, tools and continuous support to its participants, WorkAdvance will help close the skills gap between those seeking work and available jobs, benefiting the region's employers," said Jill Rizika, executive director of Towards Employment.

Collaborators in the Manufacturing Towards Employment Program in Mahoning County are lead partner Burdman Group Inc., together with the Mahoning and Columbiana Training Association, Mahoning County One Stop, Kent State University/Trumbull Campus and the Business Resource Network.

Mahoning County partners in the Northeast Ohio Health Science and Innovation Coalition are the Burdman Group (lead) along with MCTA, Mahoning County One Stop, Kent Trumbull and NEO HealthForce.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio

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