AlabamaWorks 2021 Virtual Conference

AlabamaWorks 2021 Virtual Conference

September 21-22

Register Now!

Keynote Sessions

2020: Foresight, Not Hindsight
Josh Davies

The Silent Progress Killer: Unconscious Bias
Dr. Courtney Teague

Governor’s Address & Presentation of Innovator Awards
Governor Kay Ivey

Building Disability into Alabama’s “New Normal”
Dr. Richarad Pimentel

Trauma–Informed Care for Workforce Development Professionals
Joseph Seymour

September 21, 2021

8:00 – 8:15 am

8:15 – 9:00 am

Welcome & Opening Remarks with Ed Castile

Human-Centered Design for Public Workforce System Panel

Hear straight from the leadership of Alabama’s workforce partners how the state’s  “no wrong door approach” to workforce and human services means citizens can access the full variety of state and federally funded workforce development programs regardless of which agency they go to for help.

9:00 – 9:45 am

The State of Youth Employment: Learning from Youth-Centered Research

To better understand young people’s perspectives on their employment experiences during an unprecedented time, America’s Promise Alliance conducted qualitative and quantitative research in 2020 and 2021, focused on listening directly to young people. This session will explore findings related to how COVID has affected young workers, the effects of workplace discrimination, and the most helpful supports to help young people reach their career goals both now and in the future.   *SHRM CEU eligible.

9:45 –  10:00 am


10:00 – 10:45 am

Classroom to Career Pathways with Innovative Simulation-Based Training Programs

Empower students, graduates and jobseekers with hands-on skills and connect them with community employers in need of skilled candidates.

10:45 – 11:45 am

Breakout Sessions – Choose One
*Recordings of all breakout sessions will be available after the conference!

EQ is the new IQ: Emotional Intelligence for Workforce Professionals

Recent research has proven that Emotional Intelligence is far more influential in determining success than IQ. The good news is that anyone can improve their Emotional Intelligence and therefore increase opportunities for success in almost any endeavor. This interactive workshop will explore the core concepts of Emotional Intelligence and how mastery of these skills will have an undeniable impact on the work you do every day, either as direct service providers or management professionals.

Partnerships that Work

Partnerships are key to the successful programs that the Alabama Community College System has developed to solve workforce challenges. Hear the highlights and features of innovative programs such as: JSCC’s Heavy Equipment Program, SUSCC/AU Path to the Plains, Reid State and Lurleen B. Wallace’s partnership with Liberty Oilfield Services the Lineman Program with Alabama Power.

Disability Etiquette & Awareness in the Workplace

Most people are eager to do the right thing when interacting with someone who has a disability, whether it be someone who is blind or deaf, or affected by a speech impediment, or cognitive impairment, or spinal cord injury, or any other disability, either visible or hidden. In this virtual training, participants will learn the preferred etiquette or manner of interacting with persons who have a disability, as recommended by those who have the disability.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

11:45 – 12:15 pm

Lunch Break

12:15 – 1:15 pm

Keynote Address with Josh Davies
2020: Foresight, Not Hindsight

There is only one constant in this world – change, and nothing exemplified that better than 2020. Now is the opportunity for us to evolve our practices and ensure that we develop solutions that ensure everyone has an equal opportunity for success. Discover four strategies that you can start implementing immediately to deliver results. While it is often said that hindsight is 2020, visionary leaders are realizing it is actually foresight.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

1:15 – 2:15 pm

Breakout Sessions – Choose One
*Recordings of all breakout sessions will be available after the conference!

Branding Your Workplace to Reach Job Seekers

In a tight labor market branding, your workplace is the key to winning the right recruits. Join expert media strategists as they discuss how to reach the job seekers, both passive and active, by differentiating your brand.

Breaking Down Barriers to Postsecondary Education

Alabama Possible improves postsecondary access and success for low-income, first-generation & students of color through its Alabama Goes to College campaign (AG2C) designed to increase financial aid accessibility and college application completion. Learn how AG2C equips educators and community leaders to assist students to navigate their journey through a postsecondary pathway with 3 components: Cash for College, Alabama College Application Week, and College and Career Decision Day.

Visual Impairments & Assistive Technology in the Workplace

This interactive session will cover a variety of topics including common misconceptions and best practices for working with those with visual impairments.  It will highlight a broad selection of success stories and also offer a brief selection of the most popular accommodations visually impaired individuals use at work.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

2:15 – 3:15 pm

Breakout Sessions – Choose One
*Recordings of all breakout sessions will be available after the conference!

Transforming STEM Education for a Stronger Workforce

STEM Education is Alabama’s major avenue to its STEM workforce. Changing how today’s students are learning STEM is critical to having the workforce we need in the future.

WIOA – What is it? What does it do? Who does it serve?

Join a panel of experts as they discuss the details of WIOA and how to make it more meaningful to employers, individuals and the support agencies that provide services to the workforce system.

Deaf Culture in the Workplace

Gain knowledge and information about deaf culture and how to be inclusive of individuals with deafness in the workplace as well as learn how to interact with interpreters and use assistive technology to enhance interviewing, hiring, and retention of qualified job candidates and employees with deafness.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

3:15 – 3:30 pm

Afternoon Break

3:30 – 4:30 pm

Building Disability into Alabama’s “New Normal” with Dr. Richard Pimentel

In a time of defining Alabama’s “New Normal,” it is important to ensure to include individuals with disabilities. In this session, Dr. Pimentel highlights the steps needed to build Disability into Alabama’s New Normal and ensure that the strengths, abilities, and needs of workers with disabilities are considered and included when planning and implementing workforce services, initiatives, and programs.

4:30 – 5:30 pm

Alabama Governor’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities State-Wide Awards Event

The Alabama Governor’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities recognizes the contributions and successes of people with disabilities and those individuals and/or entities who have worked to enable individuals with disabilities to achieve competitive integrated employment.

September 22, 2021

8:00 – 8:45 am

Trauma – Informed Care for Workforce Development Professionals

Trauma-informed care is an approach in various service-based fields that recognizes the presence of trauma symptoms. It acknowledges the role that trauma may play in the lives of the program participants we all serve every day. This highly informative and engaging workshop will discuss the various types of traumas, the five principles of trauma-informed care, and best practices that will help mitigate and hopefully eliminate re-traumatization in our service delivery.

8:45 – 9:30 am

The Silent Progress Killer: Unconscious Bias

During this interactive learning experience, participants will engage in tough conversations about how implicit biases impact the workplace and their daily lives. Participants will examine the underlying assumptions that often limit their decision-making. They will learn powerful strategies to reframe these assumptions to open up new possibilities.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

9:30 – 10:30 am

Breakout Sessions – Choose One
*Recordings of all breakout sessions will be available after the conference!

Industry 4.0  and Beyond

Alabama’s Robotics Technology Park (RTP) is at the forefront of robotics and automation training and Industry 4.0, which is the digitization of manufacturing. Learn how RTP is helping manufacturers solve challenges through advanced technology initiatives like mechatronics, RFID, and virtual learning opportunities. RTP not only trains clients in the latest robotic technology, but they do it at no cost to the company.

Using the Baldrige Criteria to Improve Workforce Development

This presentation focuses on how to use the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, which is the basis for the Alabama Performance Excellence Program, to improve an organization’s workforce development activities and overall performance excellence. Participants will learn how to become involved in the State of Alabama’s Performance Excellence Program and how to use this as a resource to enhance workforce development and overall quality management.

Autism Spectrum Disorders: Bringing Unique Strengths to Work

People with Autism Spectrum disorder (ASD) have a lot of strengths and skills and, when given the right tools and environment, can be an asset to a company or agency. This session will provide an overview of common characteristics of ASD in the workplace and will discuss strategies and resources for recruiting and retaining job seekers and employees with ASD.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

10:30 – 10:45 am


10:45 – 11:45 am

Keynote Address with Jason Phelps, ACRI
Building Alabama – Meeting the Workforce Challenges of Today and Tomorrow

From the ACRI Go Build Alabama campaign inspiring a new generation of skilled trades workers to the CICT Grant Program providing enhanced training opportunities,the commercial and industrial construction industry has programs in place to address workforce challenges and changes. Learn about the strategies and resources employed by the Go Build Alabama campaign, the Alabama Construction Industry Craft Training Grant Program, and how to access and partner with the programs.  *SHRM CEU eligible.

11:45-12:30 pm

Governor Kay Ivey Keynote and
Presentation of the AlabamaWorks! Innovator Awards

Governor Kay Ivey will address attendees and share the state of the workforce and share an update on programs and initiatives for reaching Alabama’s Succes Plus attainment goal of 500,000 credentialed workers by 2025. Following the governor’s address stay tuned for the presentation of the AlabamaWorks! Innovator Awards that highlight innovative programs and people in our state’s workforce ecosystem.

Thank you to our conference sponsors!

Free SHRM CEU Credit Available For Some Sessions!

The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®. This program is valid for [8] PDCs for the SHRM-CP® or SHRM-SCP®. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit

Register Now!