IowaWORKS programs help individuals gain workplace skills
15 Aug 2019
The need for skilled workers in manufacturing, construction trades, healthcare, and information technology continues to be a challenge for area employers, with nearly 56 percent of the employers in Iowa reporting difficulty in finding applicants with the skills needed to fill their openings (Iowa Workforce Needs Assessment, 2018, Iowa Workforce Development).
IowaWORKS, now located at 1801 E. Kimberly Rd., Davenport, offers a wide range of programs designed to help individuals gain high demand workplace skills.
“Low unemployment and increased wages have resulted in fewer individuals pursuing post-high school training,” said Paula Arends, Workforce Innovation Director for IowaWORKS and Eastern Iowa Community Colleges.
“As a result, we are not meeting the need for skilled workers. It is urgent that everyone—parents, schools, and employers--encourage individuals to pursue some type of post-secondary training/education. A four-year degree isn’t the answer for everyone, and employers don’t require four-year degrees for many of the high demand openings they have. There are many shorter term options that lead to great wages and job security. ”
IowaWORKS offers training assistance to eligible individuals including dislocated workers, low income adults, and youth with barriers to employment. Support may include tuition, required books and equipment, child care, and transportation. In addition, the training programs provide on-going support for participants throughout training, and work with them to find employment after training. Individuals who don’t know what type of career they are interested in pursuing can attend workshops at IowaWORKS to learn about how their interests and abilities align with high demand occupations.
“This is a great time for job seekers, high school students and graduates, and individuals working in entry level positions to gear up for a really bright future,” Arends reports. “ Resources are plentiful, and the opportunities for skilled workers are endless.”