Nick Moore Leads the Charge for Governor Ivey’s Strategic Workforce Development Plan

During her first State of the State address nearly a year ago, Gov. Kay Ivey staked her ground on workforce development, job creation and education under her Strong Start, Strong Finish plan, which, if successful, will transform the state’s education and labor opportunities.

If Ivey succeeds, her legacy as one of the state’s most consequential governors will be secure.

Aiding her in this monumental undertaking is Enterprise native Nick Moore who heads the Governor’s Office of Education and Workforce Transformation (GOEWT), which is charged with implementing the governor’s strategic workforce development plan.

Read more in The Alabama Political Reporter.

Perkins V Will be Crucial for Success Plus

By: Josh Laney
Senior Director/Workforce Development
Alabama State Department of Education

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On July 31, 2018, the president signed the Strengthening the Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) into law. This provides the primary source of federal direction to states regarding the implementation of career and technical training programs for secondary and post-secondary students.

The new law maintains the general structure and themes of the previous Perkins law, but provides some new opportunities for tighter alignment of programs of study to data-driven workforce needs.

Read the rest of the article in The Alabama Political Reporter.

Lynn Works to Tighten the Bond Between the Alabama Community Colleges and Industry

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Recently, Jeff Lynn, vice chancellor of workforce and economic development for the Alabama Community College System, sat down for an interview with The Evolllution magazine to discuss his and the Alabama Community College System’s efforts in aligning the system with the needs of business and industry to shrink the skills gap.

Read the article here.

Alabama Schools Looking More Like Factories

Alabama schools have taught career tech courses for decades but are now packing more value into what students learn by making the courses more like jobs.

The effort follows a growing recognition of the need to serve students who might not pursue a four-year college degree but can master the skills that are in strong demand in Alabama’s changing economy.

Read more at AL.com.

Unemployment Rate Dips Below Four Percent

Employment and job counts have once again reached record levels. In November 2018, 2,128,082 people were counted as employed, an increase of 46,330 from November 2017. Wage and salary employment, which measures the number of jobs our economy is supporting, grew to 2,069,800, representing a yearly increase of 35,400 jobs.

“Business is booming in Alabama,” said Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington. “We are continuing to shatter employment records month after month. Jobs are growing at a record 1.7 percent yearly growth rate. It’s a great time to be doing business in Alabama.”

Read more here.

Unemployment numbers displayed on Alabama state map

FROM THE REGIONS

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Second-Annual WOW 2.0 is Set for April

WOW 2.0, a continuation of the Worlds of Work Expo, will take place April 16-17, at Shelton State Community College – Martin Campus. WOW 2.0 allows high school seniors to interview for jobs with competitive companies in West Alabama, with interviews taking place April 16.

April 17 is College and Career Day, an opportunity for high school juniors to interview for part-time jobs and meet with two-year and four-year colleges. Stay up to date on WOW 2.0 details here.

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Sigao Studies Takes Advantage of OJT Funds

Through industry clusters, Central Six AlabamaWorks is helping employers address their workforce needs and providing solutions. One solution Central Six is partnering with local career centers to promote is on-the-job training funding, a reimbursement program to assist employers in offsetting some of their costs in hiring. Central Six has specifically been educating the non-traditional employers, including in the information technology sector, about the benefits of the program and recently assisted in launching two OJT contracts with local IT companies.

The first IT company to take advantage of this funding in Region 4 is Sigao Studios, In this video, please listen to Christopher Sims and Joi West with Sigao Studios discuss how OJT has benefited their company and helped them grow their team. For more information about OJT in Region 4, please contact Kristen O’Keefe at kokeefe@centralsix.org.

Mayor Woodfin Visits Germany to Learn More About Apprenticeship Program

This past fall, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin took a trip to Germany with the goal of finding an innovative new way to ensure Birmingham youngsters can find jobs.

Read more here.

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  • Amazon Opens Sortation Center. AL.com
  • Senator Proposes Bill to Remove Restrictions from Hiring Former Inmates. ABC33/40
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  • South Alabama Regional Airport Makes Big Announcement. WSFA
  • New Chamber Executive Director Makes Changes. Southeast Sun
  • Wallace to Offer Training, Certifications for Construction Industry Workers. WTVY
  • Wickles Pickles Returns to Brundidge. BBJ
  • Charles Henderson to Offer New Courses in the Spring. Troy Messenger
  • Shaw to Invest $184 Million in Fiber Facility. Made in Alabama
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Apprenticeship Changes Student’s Life

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During high school, Dujuan Finley decided to take a welding class through the career technical program in the Mobile County Public School system. To his surprise, he learned that he enjoyed welding, and even more surprising to him, he was told he was good at it. In fact, he earned awards including welder of the year and welder of the week three times while completing the career tech program.

Finley had no idea what he was going to do after high school. He did not have a great support system in his home life and feared he would end up following the same path as those who lived in his neighborhood. He knew that path likely led to felonies and illegal drugs. He didn’t want that life, and luckily, one of his high school instructors saw his potential. With the guidance of the high school welding instructor, Finley ended up enrolling in the AIDT Maritime Training Center’s welding class. In the program, he improved his skills, and at 18 he, was placed in a job at a fabrication shop making $17 per hour. That was his very first job!

He improved his skills there, and when that contract ended, he met with the SAWDC project manager who placed him into a job at a local manufacturing company, where he learned how to weld different alloys and perform mirror welding. When that contract ended, Finley informed the SAWDC project manager that he wanted to get on with a company where he could have a career. His timing was perfect because the project manager had just been informed that there was a local shipyard accepting applications for a pipe welding apprenticeship program. Finley and the project manager knew that should be his next step.

Today, two years later, Finley has one year left in the apprenticeship program. Upon completion, he will be a National Accredited Journeyman Pipe Welder. He plans to continue working at the shipyard as he pursues a bachelor’s degree in business.

At 22, Finley is now engaged and has made an offer on a house in the Grand Bay area. Eventually, he would like teach welding and change the lives of others–just like his life has been changed.

Headlines

Statewide Headlines

National Headlines

  • Jobs Require Less Than a Four-Year Degree. Why are They Unfilled? 74million.org.
  • Career Planning Helps Middle Schoolers Prepare for the Future. Education Drive
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AlabamaWorks is a network of interconnected providers of workforce services, including all of the governmental, educational and private-sector components that train, prepare and match job seekers with employers.

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