First of twelve statewide events to be held in Brattleboro
Ongoing demographic changes have produced a consistent decline in the number of Vermonters in the workforce, creating challenges for employers and for the economy as a whole. As a result, Governor Phil Scott and his administration are prioritizing workforce development. To support these efforts, the state’s Regional Development Corporations (RDC) of Vermont are sponsoring 12 regional summits, in partnership with the state Department of Labor and State Workforce Development Board. The first event will take place October 3rd in Brattleboro.
The summits will provide actionable solutions for employers and better awareness and partnerships among the regional statewide service providers. Janette Bombardier, P.E., Chief Technology Officer for Chroma Technology Corp., underscored the value of participating these events, “As a member of the State Workforce Development Board (SWDB), and part of the growing technology and manufacturing community of Windham County, this initiative is very important to our success. Our ability to develop additional solutions to attract key talent to the region and continue to develop the skills of our existing workforce is a critical imperative to growing our business.”
On October 3rd Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation is sponsoring the first event, the Windham Regional Summit, to be held at World Learning / SIT in Brattleboro. Attendees will include local employers from diverse sectors, and the network of providers and trainers who locate, train, and equip workers to be successful. Output from the Summit will be used to help regional partners build stronger systems, and used by the State Workforce Development Board in preparing its 2020 Workforce Strategy. Information on all 12 regional summits can be found at vermontworkforce.com.
The morning session will be employer-focused, providing an important opportunity for local businesses and organizations to focus on workforce challenges specific to this region, and communicate Windham’s talent needs directly to representatives from local and state agencies. Employers are strongly urged to attend this unique event, developed expressly by the RDC’s to augment local and statewide efforts to meet employment demand. Service providers will meet in the afternoon focusing on developing actionable recommendations based on best-practices for retaining, growing, and upskilling the workforce. Along with BDCC Executive Director, Adam Grinold, facilitators will be Jeffrey Lewis, formerly with the Vermont Futures Project, and Erika Hoffman-Kiess, back in Vermont after years of international economic development work.
Workforce development is not just a policy-level issue. Impacts of a shrinking workforce are felt by Vermonters every day: in the restaurant that curtails service hours, the construction company that is scheduling a year out, the manufacturing business that cannot take on new projects, and the healthcare facility struggling to operate effectively. The state of Vermont recognizes the need for a robust, well-trained workforce that can meet the evolving needs of employers. It is critical to fostering a strong economy where the state can meet its obligations and provide a desirable quality of life for all Vermonters. Contact Alex Beck at BDCC for further information; firstname.lastname@example.org, 802-257-7731 x214.
About BDCC & SeVEDS
Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation is a private, nonprofit economic development organization that serves as a catalyst for industrial and commercial growth throughout Southeastern Vermont, including Windham County and the towns of Readsboro, Searsburg, Winhall, and Weston. BDCC serves as the State of Vermont’s certified Regional Development Corporation (RDC) for the greater Windham County area. BDCC is one of 12 RDCs throughout Vermont. This BDCC activity was made possible in part by a grant from the State of Vermont through the Agency of Commerce and Community Development. For more information visit: https://brattleborodevelopment.com/
Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies (SeVEDS) is an affiliate of BDCC that grew from a 2008 grassroots effort, initiated by BDCC, to understand and create long term strategies needed to reverse the economic decline of the Windham Region and plan for the economic impacts from the closure of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. In 2014, after multiple years of regional input, education, and data gathering, SeVEDS received federal approval for the Windham Region’s federally recognized S.M.A.R.T. Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS). SeVEDS partnered with Bennington’s Regional Economic Development Group in 2018 to develop the 2019 Southern Vermont Zone CEDS. For more information visit: www.seveds.com
Adam Grinold, Executive Director
Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation