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Local business leaders and representatives from area school districts joined Johnstown Area Regional Industries and the Community Foundation in announcing a new program designed to promote literacy, advanced education, and work readiness skills in order to remove barriers to employment and “open doors” for postsecondary re-training options. The program components include work readiness and communication workshops, intermediate and advanced computer classes, and outreach activities.

Participants of from JARI’s In Demand, High Priority Occupations Outreach Program offered in 2013 identified low educational attainment levels and the lack of work readiness skills as critical issues creating barriers to re-employment and enrollment in post secondary education programs. “Work readiness skills are a critical factor in hiring and retaining workers,” said Linda Thomson, JARI President. “Workers need to be able to perform specific job functions as well as meeting expectations of coming to work on time, passing background and drug tests, and working with others.”
Support from the Community Foundation will assist JARI with offering programs that address the importance of possessing a combination of work readiness skills and training beyond high school. These programs can directly impact an individual’s employability and earning potential.
“This is the second grant we’ve made in our continuing support of workforce development opportunities for our community. We’re appreciative that JARI has the educational structure in place to connect people to jobs and that real people are getting connected to real jobs because of these programs. In fact, through our earlier grant, JARI has already provided career outreach and workshops to 2,903 individuals, enrolled 115 people in five programs for critical occupations, and helped to place 70 participants with local employers. Through this new support their goal is to offer outreach to 500 individuals, workshops/seminars to 300 individuals, and placement/advanced training to 150 individuals,” said Mike Kane, President, Community Foundation for the Alleghenies. “Our mission is to help to improve our community and we’re pleased to be able to work with JARI in this shared effort at meeting that mission.”

Posted on February 26, 2014 at 12:49 PM by Angie Berzonski


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