Post Secondary Opportunities
Board of Directors
In addition to basic education, Harrison County area residents need skills to enter and advance in a workforce that is increasingly less focused on manufacturing and more service and technology oriented.
Recently Harrison County Lifelong Learning began partnering with the Harrison County Economic Development Corporation in an effort to become a "Work-Ready" community. The initiative, developed by ACT, will help match the workforce with the needs of the local industry.
From The Corydon Democrat, October 24, 2017,
The Harrison County Economic Development Corp. hopes Harrison County becomes a "work ready" community in the near future.
"It's the perfect fit," Tom Fields, the EDC's director of communication and business expansion, said of Harrison County and the program. "It'll help people find jobs, and it'll help employers find qualified employees."
Fields said Work One, Harrison County Lifelong Learning and South Harrison Community School Corp. are partnering with economic development on the initiative.
"We want to bring it to the whole county," Fields said of the other two county school districts.
Fields said Jennie Capelle, director of College & Career Readiness for South Harrison, has taken a lead role with the endeavor.
To help bridge the nation's skills gap, ACT (Assessment and Certification Tools) came up with a program called Work Ready Communities, to link, align and match the work force to the needs of industry.A non-profit organization, ACT has a track record of producing assessment and credentials.
The program requires a community-based framework for workforce and economic development that certifies a county as "work ready" when the established goals are met. It was created in response to the need for better information about employability skills and job readiness.
To develop the system, ACT consulted with employers, educators and labor organizations to define essential, functional workplace skills.
High school students will have the opportunity to obtain an ACT WorkKeys National Career Readiness Certificate that will be recognized by Harrison County employers. Levels of NCRC include platinum, gold, silver and bronze.
The Work Ready Communities initiative is based on the NCRC, which is a portable, industry-recognized credential that clearly identifies an individual's ACT WorkKeys skills in reading for information, applied math and locating information, skills required for virtually any job.
Students take a comprehensive, multi-hour test to determine their NCRC level. Work Ready has been well received among employers in Harrison County, Fields said.
"It's something we should have been doing for a long time," he said. "It's simple. It's exciting."
Last week, eight teachers and administrators with South Harrison took the NCRC test.
"That way they'll take ownership of it ... have a buy-in," Fields, who also took the test, said. "They'll understand the importance of the test."
All South Harrison seniors will take the test in January.
States as a whole or individual counties can sign up to become a Work Ready Community.
For more information, visit workreadycommunities.org