Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)
Dislocated Worker Testimonial – Kevin Church
Kevin Church was recently released from employment by Oscar Mayer (Kraft Foods). As a Dislocated Worker, Kevin attended a Rapid Response meeting and met one on one with Jeff Kennedy, our Employment Specialist focused on serving individuals being released from Kraft Foods. Initially, Kevin was looking into many different career options, including schooling after his dislocation. Kevin had many questions and worked closely with Jeff to get each and every one answered from the most difficult Unemployment issues to the simplest computer operation questions. Kevin finally decided on going to the CDL license training at Associated Training Services in Sun Prairie, WI. After passing the Over the Road test, Kevin started to apply for driving positions in the local area. Jeff supported this effort by utilizing our team’s contacts with businesses to promote Kevin and encourage hiring managers to take a closer look at his application. Jane Budde, a WorkSmart team mate had a connection with Hydrite, and identified a job that would be a perfect fit for Kevin and his driving goals. Jeff and Jane scheduled a tour and a meeting with them for Kevin. Kevin was sold on the opportunity. One interview later Kevin had a position driving a tanker truck between two of Hydrite's plants on 1st shift making $2.00 more per hour than he made at Oscar Mayer. Kevin was very pleased by the services provided by the WorkSmart team and has encouraged his former co-workers to engage with the program to help them identify their career interests and to obtain the job search assistance and training opportunities they need to meet their hiring goals.
In July of 2015, The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) replaced the Workforce Investment Act. WIOA seeks to more fully integrate Wisconsin’s workforce and talent development systems to better serve employers and job seekers in our country.
In South Central Wisconsin, the WorkSmart Network provides WIOA programming that are designed to help businesses develop strategies to meet their hiring needs and to help job seekers obtain the work related skills and experience necessary to meet those needs. Through weekly information sessions WorkSmart staff meet with individuals who are interested in job placement and training assistance for high wage, high demand employment opportunities in our region. Some of the specific resources our staff utilize to assist job seekers include On-the-Job Training, Paid Work Experience, Job Placement and Job Retention Assistance, Industry focused short term training activities (ie Welding, Computer Basics, Industrial Foundations) and long term training activities (Associate degree programs in high demand careers).
WorkSmart is administered by the Workforce Development Board of Southcentral Wisconsin. The Employment and Training Association is the local board’s largest contracted service provider. EATA provides WIOA services to Employers, Dislocated Workers and Low Income Adults in the Southcentral Wisconsin region.
WIOA Eligibility Requirements
- Must be 18 years or older
- Legally eligible to work in the United States
- Income eligible
To learn more about WorkSmart Network please contact us at (608) 288-2459 or register for a WIOA WorkSmart information session on-line at http://worksmartnetwork.org