Pathways for Dislocated Workers - National Council for Workforce

Pathways for Dislocated Workers
Conference Track: Best Practices in
Workforce and Economic Development
Session Information: 1:30pm – 2:30pm
October 16, 2013
Room: Milwaukee
Pathways for Dislocated Workers
Dr. Jo Alice Blondin
Clark State Community College
Mr. Richard Harris
Chief Student Officer
Arkansas Tech University – Ozark Campus
Sandra Cheffer
Chief Fiscal Officer
Arkansas Tech University – Ozark Campus
Pathways for Dislocated Workers
• Arkansas Tech University – Ozark Campus
response to community need
Economic climate/need
Institution’s capacity to respond
• Partners involved
• Program Implementation and Duplication
• Replication At Other Institutions
Economic Climate
• Regional economic profile – Ft. Smith, AR 2007
– 300,000 residents in the metro area (7 counties)
– Number 6 City in the Nation for Cost of Doing Business according to
Forbes Magazine
– 83% High School Diplomas
– 20% Bachelor’s Degrees
– Median household income: $32,000
– Median family income: $41,960
– Ozark, AR is the home of ATU-Ozark, a town of 3,500 people, and
located approximately 35 miles from Ft. Smith
• Who was Whirlpool
– Largest employer in Ft. Smith area
– 5,000 good-paying jobs at its peak in 2003
– Permanently closed its doors 6/29/2012
ATU-Ozark Ability and Willingness to
• Mission-driven institution
• Technical education is the primary focus
• 2007
– Enrollment of 550 students
– 13 Programs of Study
• Practical Nursing program was accepting 80 students
per year (40 Fall, 40 Spring)
Agency Partnerships
• Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA)
• Under the US Department of Labor
• Came into being under the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 and
was first proposed by President Kennedy to assist US
workers who lost their jobs to foreign trade
• According to the Department of Labor Statistics, the average
worker receiving TAA benefits has no education beyond high
school, is from a manufacturing sector, and is 46 years of
• Workers who qualify are able to receive:
– training that will improve their work skills in order to find new
employment. (improve marketability).
– Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA)
– Travel allowance
Agency Partnerships
• Arkansas Department of Workforce Services
– Manage TAA funding for the State of Arkansas
– Case Management
• Retraining
• Job placement
• Execute contracts for both individual students and
partnerships with schools.
2010 TAA Statistical Data and Comparison
(most recent statistics)
– Arkansas Data
• 32 Petitions certified
• 2,350 estimated workers covered
• $26,139,860 awarded to Arkansas
– Oklahoma
• 17 Petitions certified
• 833 estimated workers covered
• $10,605,276 awarded to Oklahoma
– Mississippi
• 17 Petitions certified
• 1,876 estimated workers covered
• $8,887,095 awarded to Mississippi
2010 TAA Statistical Data and Comparison
Agency Partnerships
Workforce Investment Act of 1998
– Enacted to replace the Job Training Partnership Act from 1982
– Purpose is to initiate private sector response to support job training efforts in communities.
Workforce Investment Board (WIB)
– Instituted to manage the Arkansas Workforce Act
– Created local board that combine public and private entities to support job training efforts
within the communities.
– Facilitated the partnership between DWS and ATU-Ozark that established the unique TAA
Nursing Program.
– Arkansas Workforce Centers provide locally developed and operated services linking
employers and jobseekers through a statewide system. “One-stop" centers are designed to
eliminate the need to visit different locations. (insert link – definition )
– Western Arkansas Employment Development Agency
Funded through WIB
Services include job placement support and direct financial assistance directly to students
(supplement to TAA funding)
– Insert web link for cited information
Adult Education
– assisted to improve college readiness for many dislocated workers.
Partnership Collaboration
• DWS initiated contact with the Ozark Campus
through the WIB
• Ozark Campus created partnership with local
hospitals to assist in program delivery.
– Classroom space
– Clinical rotations
• Contract was proposed between DWS and ATUOzark to create, implement and deliver a Practical
Nursing program for dislocated workers within an
accelerated timeframe.
Financing the Program
• Calculate total grant funds
– Program Costs
Instruction (salaries, benefits)
Student tuition, fees, books and supplies
Facilities costs such as rent and utilities
Other expenses to students *
– Indirect Cost rate not charged
– Contract was written, vetted and signed
TAA Practical Nursing Program
• Recruitment of students
– Remove students’ barriers
– Eliminated competition with non-TAA Practical
Nursing applicants
• Student preparation
– Admissions, Testing and Financial Aid
– Intensive advising sessions
• Condensed the academic program from three full
semesters to one calendar year
• Identified and hired new faculty
TAA Program Outcomes and
Lessons Learned
How to manage the class and students
Ensuring college readiness
Program Location
Program requirement changes – platform courses
Faculty Roles – balance the instruction
How to structure the funding model
Changed end of program course requirements to improve
board examination pass rates
– Focus to improve program outcomes and ensure student
– Used Perkins funds to purchase materials and software, and
integrated this instruction into the curriculum
TAA Program Outcomes and
Lessons Learned (continued)
• Successful implementation of first program led to interest in
subsequent programs
– Since 2006 – total of four TAA programs
– Created additional slots just for TAA workers
• Three Nursing cohorts
• One Air Conditioning and Refrigeration cohort
– 17 students entered and completed the program
– Employment data is not available at this time
– All from layoffs and facility closure in the manufacturing sector
• Also proposed a Welding program; funding not approved
• From January 2007 – July 2010
– 54 students entered program, 49 graduated, 45 found employment
• Amended the program and contract each time – as mentioned in
previous slides
TAA Program Duplication
• Arkansas Tech University – Ozark Campus exceled at
fulfilling the goals of the contract and the needs and
expectations of the students
• Benefits to DWS
– Reducing the long-term cost of dislocated workers
• Retraining costs for one year versus unemployment and TRA
benefits for up to 30 months
– Getting workers back into the workforce in a timely
– Creating opportunities for dislocated workers that did not
otherwise exist
• Allowed WIB to fulfill its mission by leveraging private
and public entities to meet local employment needs.
Replication At Other Institutions
Evaluate the economic climate
Awareness of the economy in the region and in the state
Adopt a collaborative mentality
Be sensitive , availability to the community, be a willing partner, be willing to allocate the resources to
respond to the need – this will need support from all levels of the institution,
Identify the needs in the service area where education, government and economic uncertainty can be
combined to benefit the workforce. How can the institution adapt to the environment?
What sectors of the economy are lacking a qualified workforce?
Seek Agency/funding partnerships
Position your institution to be able to enlist help. Start now; if you are not already involved in those
partnerships, seek them.
Develop Program Timeline
Create accessibility for education but do not compromise academic integrity
Establish a contract
Are there any company layoffs or closings, or other job losses
Clear goals and responsibilities
Proper funding: funding – the money is there – need to access it – don’t be afraid to ask
Focus on program retention, completion, and employment
Celebrate and publicize successes
Reach for New Heights
Pride in Success

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