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NOVA, The City of Manassas, Prince William County, Virginia Career Works and SkillSource Form Elevate Coalition to Help Get Residents Back to Work

Manassas, VA –September 14, 2020 –Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) is partnering with the City of Manassas, Prince William County, Virginia Career Works and the SkillSource Group to ensure that community members affected by COVID-19 are able to get back to work by receiving free education and workforce supportive services. The City of Manassas and Prince William County’s leadership forged this strategic partnership with a combined $1,900,000 in funding from the CARES Act to launch the ELEVATE program to provide free resources for those displaced workers. Additionally, this funding supports businesses in upskilling their workforce.

ELEVATE enhances the capacity of SkillSource, the City of Manassas, Prince William County and NOVA’s to provide jobseeker and employer services that are focused on the needs of individuals. Participants can start their training at NOVA in areas such as information technology, healthcare, professional education and English language skills (ESL), at no cost to the participant. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most courses will be offered virtually; however, for courses in areas such as healthcare, in-person training options may be offered in heavily-monitored and sanitized settings at NOVA Manassas campus

This unique partnership offers participants a complete range of services from obtaining free education and certification, to support services such as transportation and stipends, and ends with job placement services, and in some programs guaranteed interview with a local employer. The benefit to the participants includes that these educational programs can be completed in a short few weeks, so interested participants need to act now to receive the full benefit of Elevate’s workforce program. The grant cycle will run from September until the end of December. The earlier a participant can go through the application process; the more resources will be available.  Funds for the program will continue until exhausted. 

“We already have one of the strongest, most innovative, and productive workforces in the country,” said Christina Winn, executive director of the Prince William County Department of Economic Development. “These resources will not only help residents get back to work, but also return to the workforce armed with new skills and abilities that will help them advance in their careers, be more productive, and help make our economy more resilient."

Examples of available training of the Elevate Program:

“COVID has affected many Northern Virginians, but not all in the same way,” said Steve Partridge, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Workforce Innovation. “NOVA is excited to work with SkillSource, Prince William County, and the City of Manassas in an effort to ensure that our community members can find solutions for employment opportunities right now, and right in their own backyard.”

This partnership is one of only a few that have successfully come together to put such an important initiative forward—economic mobility through workforce training. This local partnership will help to ensure the success of many Prince William County and City of Manassas community members in this ongoing time of need.

“By removing cost as a barrier and adding supportive services, the City can best help residents get jobs,” said Economic Development Director Patrick Small. “By helping people get jobs we help businesses meet their workforce needs.”

Further, program participants will also have access to interview preparation and job placement assistance after the completion of their training at NOVA. This wraparound workforce program enhances the opportunity for participant success with support from start to finish. From the first step of applying for funding through completion of the program, the workforce grant program is designed to be accessible, streamlined and results driven.

The Chairman of the Virginia Career Works Northern Region Board of Directors, Christopher Rieley (a Senior Vice President at The Bank of Clarke County) noted that the new County and City funding “will be critically important as we align local jobseekers with new skills development opportunities at NOVA. Our Virginia Career Works Center staff will also work closely with County and City business owners to help them fill available jobs and to strengthen their existing workforce through targeted training programs.” 

NOVA has used CARES Act funds to ensure that students affected by the pandemic are able to receive emergency funds. To date, NOVA has dispersed $5,393,350 to 8,819 students.  The City of Manassas also used CARES Act funds to make small business grants. The City awarded 140 small businesses $2,500 each to help offset revenue losses.  Prince William County also funded 462 businesses with $3.6m using Cares Act funding for a small business relief micro-grant. 

Programming Contacts:

Melanie Stover, Director of Corporate & Workforce Engagement, NOVA, mstover@nvcc.edu

Nicole Smith, Assistant Director, City of Manassas, nsmith@manassasva.gov

Seema Jain, Vice President of Operations, The Skillsource Group, seema.jain@vcwnorthern.com

Michele Weatherly, Director of Existing Business Engagement, PWC, mweatherly@pwcgov.org

Media Contacts:

Patrick J. Small, Economic Development Director, City of Manassas,  psmall@manassasva.gov

Hoang Nguyen, Public Information Officer, NOVA, hdnguyen@nvcc.edu

Trevor Johnson, Marketing and Communications Director, PWC, TJohnson@pwcgov.org

 

 

Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through NOVA Online. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site, www.nvcc.edu.

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