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Workforce Development Division

The Upper Savannah Council of Governments Workforce Development Division assists employers and job seekers in the counties of Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, Newberry, and Saluda.

Businesses can get assistance recruiting and screening qualified candidates. Training and retention assistance is available as well. SC Works Centers have statistical information about the area’s labor market.

Individual job seekers can get help finding and applying for job openings. Information about educational and job training programs is available. One-hour workshops on a variety of subjects are offered at SC Works Centers. For individuals who are eligible for the Workforce Investment Act and are willing to invest in themselves. specialized services including career counseling, internship opportunities and training may be available.

A comprehensive youth program for economically disadvantaged youth between the ages of 14-21 offers activities such as internships, mentoring, occupational skill training, and summer employment.

The Workforce Development Division carries out the policies developed by the 29-member Upper Savannah Workforce Development Board. It uses funds from the Workforce Investment Act and leverages other resources to operate a regional workforce development system. Workforce Investment Act contractors in this system include the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce, GLEAMNS Human Resources Commission, Piedmont Technical College, and the S.C. Vocational Rehabilitation Department.

Key to the success of the system is the cooperation of partners. The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce, S.C. Vocational Rehabilitation Department, GLEAMNS Human Resources Commission, Piedmont Technical College, Experience Works, AARP, the Commission for the Blind, local adult education and literacy organizations and other agencies work with the Workforce Development Division to operate SC Works Centers.

For more information on the Upper Savannah SC Works System, visit the web site at www.upperscworks.com, contact
the Workforce Development staff at 864-941-8050, or e-mail at work@uppersavannah.com

Workforce Development Board

The Workforce Development Division carries out the policies developed by the 29-member Upper Savannah Workforce Development Board. It uses funds from the Workforce Investment Act and leverages other resources to operate a regional workforce development system. Workforce Investment Act contractors in this system include the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce, GLEAMNS Human Resources Commission, Piedmont Technical College, and the S.C. Vocational Rehabilitation Department.

Incumbent Worker Grant Program

The purpose of the Incumbent Worker Grant Program (IWT) program is to provide resources for employers to train currently employed workers in an effort to keep business and workers competitive. IWT addresses training needed to meet challenging skill requirements caused by new technology, retooling, new product lines and new organizational structuring.

To find out if funds are available, contact Amy Dowell, Workforce Development Specialist at (864) 941-8071 or e-mail at tgoode@uppersavannah.com.


WorkKeys®

WorkKeys® is an assessment tool that measures workforce readiness, academic achievement and helps employers match skills with job requirements. Upper Savannah’s Workforce Development Program has selected WorkKeys® as it primary assessment tool.
 

Recent Activities:

 

WorkKeys –The Upper Savannah region continued a program to improve the basic skills levels of job applicants. More than 359 individuals served through the workforce system took WorkKeys tests in reading, math and locating information. Remediation is offered through adult education partners, Piedmont Technical College and at the SC Works Center. Businesses can have their jobs profiled by Upper Savannah staff and then recruit applicants who have the workforce skills necessary to be successful.

 

Business Services–Ninety-four trainees in the region participated in On-the-Job Training – an increase of 113% from the previous year. The trainees were hired by 47 employers.

 

Upper Savannah Job Fair –Organized and held two successful Job Fairs in September and April at the Greenwood Mall. More than 70 employers participated each time. The SC Works Center staff helped inform customers about the fairs and held workshops to prepare job seekers for success.

 

Manufacturing Initiative –Nineteen students completed the Manufacturing Assembly Technician Training which helps job seekers transition into advanced manufacturing.

 

Staff Accomplishments –Upper Savannah and 5 local areas in SC were included in a Department of Labor grant application to develop and train individuals in manufacturing training programs. In addition, Upper Savannah was included in another grant application that was completed by Central Midlands Council of Governments Workforce staff. The proposal included funding to increase the number of individuals completing their GED and enrolling in occupational training.

 

Hosted a meeting of Georgia and South Carolina local Workforce Area staff that border the Lower and Upper Savannah region. The meeting was held at the SC Works Center in McCormick. The purpose of the meetings is to foster cooperation and share information across state boundaries.

 

Fifteen staff members from four agencies completed a year-long business services training. All passed the national certification. As a result the area’s ability to assist employers has been enhanced.

 

Workforce Development Board – Completed first year of five year strategic plan. Major goals include improving educational attainment, strengthening soft skills and preparing youth for careers. The board is focused on assisting advanced manufacturing, healthcare and small business with workforce needs. SC Works Centers will be the focal point for job seeker and business services activities.

 

Workforce Investment Act Program Results - Upper Savannah exceeded or met all U.S. Department of Labor performance measures for Workforce Investment Act programs. Performance results were

 

Youth Programs:

Placement in Employment or Education                                73.8%

Attainment of Degree or Certificate                                       71.8%

Literacy or Numeracy Gains                                                   53.0%

Adult and Dislocated Worker Programs:

Adult Entered Employment Rate                                           71.0%

Dislocated Worker Entered Employment Rate                      79.8%

Adult Six Months Retention Rate                                          80.6%

Dislocated Six Months Retention Rate                                  92.1% 

Adult Six Months Average Earnings                          $9,804           

Dislocated Worker Six Months Average Earnings                 $13,019

 

Abbeville County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 169 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Abbeville County SC Works Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 497 individuals attended workshops at the Abbeville Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – Provided Rapid Response Assistance for employees of Abbeville County Schools, and Covenant Way that were losing their jobs due to layoffs.

 

Youth Program– A total of seven Abbeville County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Youth participants were placed at seven worksites. Five of the worksites were in the private sector and two were in the public sector. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Abbeville County Client Highlight

Zach completed an On-the-Job Training assignment with Adams Building Supply. His new boss boasts that he is such a good worker that customers try to hire him away.

 

Edgefield County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 164 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Edgefield County SC Works Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 350 individuals attended workshops at the Edgefield Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – There were no Rapid Response layoffs in Edgefield County during this period.

 

Youth Program - A total of three Edgefield County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Youth participants were placed at two worksites. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Edgefield County Client Highlight – Elizabeth completed her associate’s degree from Aiken Technical College with honors. She is working full time.

 

Greenwood County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 513 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Greenwood County Workforce Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 1,891individuals attended workshops at the Greenwood Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – Provided Rapid Response Assistance to workers at Sweet Pea’s Restaurant, Sykes, Guardian Building Products, Itron, Center Manufacturing, and Advance America that were losing their jobs due to layoffs.

 

Youth Program – A total of 12 Greenwood County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Six of the worksites were in the private sector and three were in the public sector. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Greenwood County Client Highlight

Bill handles a wide variety of maintenance issues at a large apartment complex. His training in Heating Ventilation and Air Condition helps him keep residents comfortable. Bill had a good work history in sales and manufacturing. He draws on all of his skills to solve problems efficiently.

 

Laurens County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 320 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Laurens County SC Works Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 2,735 individuals attended workshops at the Laurens County Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – Provided Rapid Response Assistance to workers that lost their jobs at Laurens Hospital, Goody’s and Food Lion as a result of layoffs or closures.

 

Youth Program – A total of four Laurens County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Three of the worksites were in the private sector. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Laurens County Client Highlights

Jason got a job as an over-the-road truck driver with a national company just two weeks after gaining his commercial driver’s license. He has a full-time job with benefits.

Portia graduated high school with honors and received a full scholarship from a four year college.

 

McCormick County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 114 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the McCormick County SC Works Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 269 individuals attended workshops at the McCormick Center on topics such as Job Search 2011, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – Provided Rapid Response Assistance to workers that lost their jobs at TSAY Ferguson Williams as a result of layoffs.

 

Youth Program – A total of five McCormick County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

McCormick County Client Highlight

Joshua is working full-time at Milliken and attending Piedmont Technical College to earn a business degree.

 

Newberry County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 304 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Newberry County Workforce Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 1,428 individuals attended workshops at the Newberry Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

 

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – Provided Rapid Response Assistance to workers that lost their jobs at Trucast and Food Lion as a result of layoffs or closures.

 

Youth Program– A total of six Newberry County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Five of the worksites were in the private sector. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Newberry County Client Highlight

 

Martha received a High Tech scholarship from Piedmont Technical College to help her complete her degree in automotive technology. She graduated with honors and has a training related job.

 

Saluda County Highlights

 

Workforce Services – A total of 130 adults, youth, and dislocated workers received specialized services at the Saluda County Workforce Center such as occupational training, GED classes, mentoring, and on-the-job training. A total of 224 individuals attended workshops at the Saluda Center on topics such as Job Search 2012, Resume Construction and Winning Applications.

Dislocated Worker Rapid Response Services – There were no Rapid Response layoffs in Saluda County during this period.

 

Youth Program – A total of five Saluda County youth worked in internships brokered by the Workforce Investment Act program. Evening networking groups in each county included the following topics: Career Exploration, Financial Aid, Domestic Violence Awareness, Study Skills, Healthy Lifestyles, Dress for Success, and more.

 

Saluda County Client Highlight –

Wade earned two associate degrees simultaneously with a 4.0 GPR. His background in machining and advanced training in mechatronics helped him land a job at the new Bridgestone plant in Aiken.