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The federal government is helping to fund apprenticeship programs for employers more than ever right now. This goes beyond dollars; we’re talking about individualized support, skill assessment and guidance, resources, and more. So why the flood of money and focus to this specific type of training?

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One great thing about the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) is its advocacy of the use of technology for the improvement of teaching, learning, professional development, productivity, system efficiencies and accessibility. In this challenging time, Workforce Development professionals can use technology to help others and get America back to work.

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In this article we share key steps to consider, ideas, and best practice COVID-19 responses to help State and Regional Workforce Agencies develop effective COVID-19 recovery plans.

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Manufacturers are facing a dire employee shortage. While nearly every industry is being affected by the rapid retirement of the Baby Boomer generation and the reduced rate of Generation X and millennials entering the manufacturing workforce, the greatest risk the industry faces is failing to adapt. Some of the reasons for lack of adaption include: the low employment rate, skills gaps, and the inability to attract qualified workers.

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A skill gap analysis helps to identify the skill gaps an individual or group of individuals has. Just like a gorge or a river, you can probably recognize there is a gap from here to there, but what is the best way to span that gap? The skill gap analysis is like a bridge’s blueprint- it helps to identify the best way to span the gap.

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Local Workforce Development Boards (LWDBs) face challenges on how to serve the youth in their region with limited WIOA youth resources. It is estimated that over 5.5 million youth (16 to 24 years old) now referred as ”Young Adults” do not have high school diplomas and are not employed. Additionally, these young adults are often dealing with other barriers such as language mastery, lack of or insufficient housing, substance abuse, health problems, transportation challenges and other cultural/social issues.

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For decades, training and upskilling workers has been challenging for trainers in many job markets, and the transit industry is no exception. Often, transit training departments are staffed with instructors who are extremely skilled in their craft, but lack essential knowledge in adult learning theory. According to statistics*, businesses lose up to $13.5 million every year per 1,000 employees due to ineffective training.

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When you think of classroom technology, what visual comes to mind? A laptop computer? An iPad? A PowerPoint presentation used by a teacher to deliver the lesson? These are definitely still tools that are being used by educators and trainers across the U.S., but advancements in learning technology are happening at lightning speed.

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Making the perfect jobseeker-employer match is no easy task for workforce development professionals. A recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report showed a total of 12.8 million individuals were either unemployed, under-employed or marginally attached to the labor market. On the employer side, key industries report a shortage of qualified applicants for a wide range of jobs. The trick to helping jobseekers find their way to the right position with the best employer starts with a solid foundation of preparation.

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