Fairfield 33 Alliance Receives $120,000 for Career Readiness Programs

The Fairfield 33 Development Alliance has been awarded funding from Ohio Lt. Governor Jon Husted, Director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, through the Industry Sector Partnership (ISP) Grant. The program supports collaborations that help bring Ohioans into the workforce pipeline while meeting the needs of job creators and the local economy.

The grant of $120,000 will be used by Fairfield 33 Development Alliance for funding the Career Readiness Program. This program includes career navigators that work with high school students to develop core job skills and gain employment, summer Career Exploration Camps for junior high students, and pre-apprenticeship training to provide skills needed for careers in manufacturing, healthcare, and skilled trades.

Addressing local workforce development is a priority for local businesses, elected officials, students, parents and community members as Fairfield County faces inevitable growth. Fairfield County has made it a priority to help local employers connect with work-ready students to build a pipeline of skilled workers.

“The Career Readiness Program targets students who have yet to decide what path they are choosing after high school,” said Fairfield County Economic Director Rick Szabrak. “This program helps connect them to local jobs, changing their trajectory to career success and becoming productive members of the community. Because institutions of higher education are cornerstone partners in this programming, degree-based pathways towards gainful local employment also remain available to all participating students. This program has been successful in redefining the typical career pathway for young adults without categorically restricting their available choices.”

The Workforce Center and Career Readiness programs now serve all eight school districts in the county. Commissioner Dave Levacy said offering a path to employment for high school students is a solution to many of the challenges facing a growing county.

“With 60 percent of high school graduates in Fairfield County not completing a post-secondary degree, it is imperative to offer certificate-based programs to provide skills to meet employers’ needs,” Levacy said. “Further, most manufacturers and businesses exploring future locations are more enticed by a readied workforce than by incentives.”

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Temple Montanez in her office

By Temple Montanez

Temple is a Senior Account Manager with Krile Communications. A Lancaster native, her love for writing, reading, and all things creative is surpassed only by her love for her family.