Giving Job Seekers a Boost to the First Rung of the Career Ladder

Room: Blue Level, Suite 19

To compete in today’s work environment and rapidly changing economy Massachusetts’ emerging and incumbent workers need support to develop sufficient literacy and numeracy skills. Beginning with an overview of where the STEM jobs are, this session will help professionals in the fields of education, adult basic education, and workforce development understand ways to boost the educational level of older youth/adults lacking the necessary math and science skills needed to enter into STEM employment or post-secondary education.  Panelists in this session will present current initiatives, including accelerated/high intensity programming to bridge the gap between workers in need of good jobs and employers in need of skilled entry level workers. These leaders from local community colleges, college and career navigators, workforce development WorkKeys programs, and contextualized developmental education programs will provide information and best practices that offer job seekers a boost to the first rung of the career ladder.

  • Meelynn Wong, J.D.  -  Associate Director, Metro North Regional Employment Board

  • Kevin Forgard, M.S. & M.A.  -  Instructional Designer, Bristol Community College
  • Ana Sanchez, B.S.  -  Career and Course Development Officer, STCC
  • Jennifer James, M.A.  -  Undersecretary, Executive Office of Labor & Workforce Development
  • Michele Sedor, M.Ed.  -  Regional Director/SABES, SABES (System for Adult Basic Education Support) at Holyoke Community College