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June 2004 Newsletter

Sharon Norman, AHECSharon Norman

Health Education Center (AHEC) representative Sharon Norman addressed the Workforce Investment Board at the May meeting. She shared with the group information about the high demand for health care workers in Northwest Georgia and the services provided by AHEC.

Blue Ridge AHEC is a non-profit regional health education center whose mission is to increase the supply, distribution and education of health professionals in Northwest Georgia. For information about AHEC call 706-802-4750 or visit www.blueridgeahec.rome.ga.us. 

SunFunding Provides Summer Jobs for Northwest Georgia Youth
By Catherine Lawler, CVRDC

Despite the fact that Georgia is currently experiencing the worst job market for teenagers since World War II, there is some relief for who are seeking employment. The Northwest Georgia Workforce Investment Board has received a $30,000 portion of a million dollars granted statewide by the Georgia Department of Labor for the creation of youth summer jobs. This grant will fund jobs for qualifying youth, most of who are already on waiting lists across the state. Typically, each youth will work 32 hours per week for six weeks and earn $5.15 per hour. A variety of jobs will be available in both the public and private sectors.

"These summer jobs will provide valuable work experiences, plus wages for Georgia’s youth,” said State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond. “Most young job seekers are having a difficult time finding work this summer because of the current tight job market. Without special efforts like this, many young Georgians face another long, restless, jobless summer.”

Additionally, Anheuser-Busch has provided the WIB with nearly $29,000 to fund jobs for youth. These funds will be used to provide opportunities for summer employment to the youth of Bartow County. The company will pay the wages and associated costs to hire twelve students and two counselors to participate in the Anheuser-Busch Green Team. The Green Team will perform community services including the completion of minor repairs and painting the homes of Bartow County residents in need.

Summer jobs provide young people with an opportunity to use their free time in a constructive manner to gain work experience and needed wages and to enhance their chances for long-term success in the workplace.

Dates to Remember

WIA And Northwestern Technical College Team Up To Get
Laid Off Workers Back To Work Quickly!!!
By Dianne Mayes, Northwestern Technical College

By March 1, 2004, a class of 10 men ready to start a new career had been assembled. (See picture). All 10 men successfully obtained their CDL licenses and have gone to work. Avery Shoemake and David Sipsy, the wonderful instructors who trained this motivated group of men, deserve recognition for the great success of the program.

This was an outstanding example of collaboration between the local Northwest Georgia agencies that serve citizens in need of retraining so they can return to the workforce as soon as possible.

Nursing Students Share Their Stories with WIB

The Workforce Investment Board (WIB) was privileged to have as speakers at the May meeting three participants in the nursing field that received assistance through the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Program.

Robin Quimby, a WIA participant through the Adult program, previously worked in Massachusetts as a certified home health aide and a certified hospice aide. Upon moving to Georgia and completing her pre-requisites at Chattahoochee Technical College, she was accepted into the WIA program as an LPN student.  She is now in her last quarter of the program and is doing well. She credits WIA with allowing her to attend school full time without the stress of working to pay tuition.  Robin says it required a lot of dedication and hard work and is very grateful for the assistance provided by WIA.

  Blue & AnnetteAnnette Wilson, a single mother of two grown children, worked as a mechanic for 21 years at Levi-Strauss in Blue Ridge and raised her family with very little support.  In June of 2003, she lost her job as the result of a plant closure. At first angry and scared, Annette listened to the information sessions held for employees affected by the closing and saw the opportunity to do something she had wanted to do all her life. She enrolled in the LPN program at Appalachian Technical College (through assistance from the HOPE grant, the WIA program, and the Georgia Department of Labor’s Rapid Response program). She completed her training December 2003. She was a leader in her class of nineteen and gave the commencement address at the graduation. She now works at Union General Hospital as a nurse. Annette is an example of how retraining can benefit not only the participant but also the entire community.

Donna Clegg received her LPN license after completing the LPN program at Coosa Valley Technical College. She received funding through the WIA Adult Program that assisted her with training expenses as well as child care supplemental support. This assistance enabled Donna to continue working part time at Winthrop Manor Nursing Center while in school. Donna completed her training, maintaining an excellent grade average and has now passed her state board exams. She is employed as an LPN by Winthrop Manor Nursing Center and is in charge of administering all medications to patients while on her shift. Donna says she is grateful to now have a job where she can assist patients who are always pleased to have her help.

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