Radford organization gets $6 million to train SWVa workers

The U.S. Department of Labor has set aside $6 million to fund a Radford­based organization promising to help disadvantaged workers across Southwest Virginia get the training and jobs they need. The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board will spread the money across more than 30 counties and cities, from Bristol to Botetourt, over the next four years in a new program called “Pathways to the American Dream.” Some of the funds will go toward traditional workforce training projects, such as hiring career coaches that will work hands­on with unemployed and underemployed workers, as well as those who have a job but lack the training required for promotion. Pathways hopes to keep those funds flexible, so it can help individuals with whatever they require, whether that’s tuition for a training course, tools they need on the job site or fees for certification exams, according to Workforce Development Board Director Marty Holliday. Other programs will take a more systematic approach, such as partnering with the region’s employers to figure out where there are gaps in the local workforce that can be plugged with worker retraining. The program will focus on the information technology, health care and advanced manufacturing industries. One of the goals Holliday said she’s most excited about is a new system that she hopes will make it possible for workers going back to school to get college credit for training they’ve already received, whether that’s on­the­job learning or certifications they picked up along the way. “Don’t make them start at zero. They came with something,” Holliday said. “People kind of weave in and out of work and training, work and training. How do we ensure they can continue to move up? The only way to do that is to give credit for prior learning, wherever that took place.” The Southwest Virginia award was one of 23 America’s Promise grants announced by the U.S. Department of Labor this month, totaling more than $111 million. Holliday said the next step is for the Workforce Development Board to meet with DOL officials to negotiate the finer points of Pathways’ budget and to set benchmarks in order to judge the program’s effectiveness.   By Jacob Demmitt 381­8621 | Posted: Sunday, November 27, 2016 5:00 am

The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board Receives the 2016 Trailblazer Award in Financial Stability

At the Unite SWVA Leadership Summit on Tuesday, October 18, 2016 the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board, along with the Southwest Virginia Workforce and the Western Virginia Workforce Development Boards, received the 2016 Trailblazer Award in Financial Stability for their partnership building and collective impact work around the Regional Rapid Response Initiative.  The award… Read more »

The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board Coordinates Large Regional Initiative to Serve Businesses and Laid-off Workers

The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board (NR/MR WDB) has been awarded $1.2 million in State Rapid Response funds to coordinate and oversee a Regional Rapid Response initiative to serve individuals and supply chain companies impacted by the large number of plant layoffs and closures throughout the region.  This initiative will cover three Workforce Areas;… Read more »

Roving Computer Labs – A Tool to Support Businesses and Organizations

In November 2014 the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board (WDB) was awarded a $50,000 State Incentive Grant (funded through Workforce Investment Act Funds overseen by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration), to support a Roving Computer Lab concept.  The funds were used to purchase equipment, software and develop partnerships and procedures… Read more »

NR/MR WDB Serves Businesses and Job Seekers

The purpose of the Federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) is to prepare eligible Adults, Dislocated Workers and Youth for entry into the labor market.  The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board (NR/MR WDB) oversees these program in the New River Valley and Mount Rogers Planning Districts.  The Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs, under… Read more »

What is the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board?

We get a lot of questions about what is the Workforce Development Board (WDB), who its members are and what they do.  So here’s a bit of background: There is a long history of Federal workforce training programs.  This one began with the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) of 1998, which was reauthorized with the Workforce… Read more »

Governor McAuliffe Announces Nearly $2 Million Grant to Retrain Former Coal Workers

  Commonwealth of Virginia Office of Governor Terry McAuliffe FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Date:  January 8, 2016 Office of the Governor Contact: Brian Coy Email:   Virginia Community College System Contact: Amanda Christopher Phone: 804-819-5382 Email:   Governor McAuliffe Announces Nearly $2 Million Grant to Retrain Former Coal Workers RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe… Read more »

GE Job Fair Press Release

GE AVIATION 400 The Professional Drive West Jefferson, NC (336) 246-1721 GE Aviation has been a solid rock for Ashe County’s economy since the West Jefferson facility opened in 2007. However, a recent expansion of the West Jefferson plant promises to make GE an even bigger part of the local economy. As part of… Read more »

Sector Strategy Implementation, an Important Step in Meeting Business Needs for Workforce Pipelines

The New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Investment Consortium Board (CB) and the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board (WDB) are planning to convene regional partners/stakeholders to explore next steps to implementing effective Sector Strategies in order to effectively and efficiently address the needs of critical businesses and industry throughout the region. This work is being built… Read more »

Galax Business Networking

  Special Twin County Area Business Networking Breakfast To Be Held In Galax GALAX – In an effort to bring business peers together to network and learn some exciting new information, the New River/Mount Rogers Workforce Development Board will sponsor a special Twin County Area Business Networking Breakfast in the conference room of The Crossroads… Read more »