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Apprenticeship is a Win-Win for Workers and Employers

With unemployment remaining at record lows, employers are searching for new ways to bring in much-needed talent. However, the best solution could be one of the oldest – apprenticeship. Employers can build a pipeline of workers who gain the skills and knowledge they need to succeed on the job through apprenticeship. We recently released case studies profiling two organizations’ journeys to establishing apprenticeship programs for in-demand jobs: the Baltimore Alliance for Careers in Healthcare in Baltimore, Maryland, and the Guilford Apprenticeship Partners Greensboro, North Carolina.

Meet the Next Healthcare Workforce Development Academy

CareerSTAT is excited to announce the second cohort of the Healthcare Workforce Development Academy. Sixteen organizations, that together employ over 120,000 frontline workers, will participate in the 18-month peer-learning experience. We are delighted to have the following organizations in the Academy and look forward to updating you on their progress.

  • Alameda Health System- Oakland, CA
  • Anne Arundel Health System- Annapolis, MD
  • Ascension Seton- Austin, TX
  • Brigham and Women's Hospital- Boston, MA
  • Bronson Healthcare Group- Kalamazoo, MI
  • Centura Health- Centennial, CO
  • Dana Farber Cancer Institute- Boston, MA
  • East Boston Neighborhood Health Center- Boston, MA
  • Eger Luthern Homes and Services and Staten Island Performing Provider System- Staten Island, NY
  • MaineHealth- Portland, ME
  • Rush University Medical Center- Chicago, IL
  • Trinity Health- Livonia, MI; Holy Cross Health- Silver Spring, MD; and St. Joseph’s Health- Syracuse, NY
  • UNC Health Care- Chapel Hill, NC

Report from Denver: Making Space for Others at the Retail Opportunity Network

The Retail Opportunity Network Annual Retreat in Denver began with a performance of a Lakota grass dance ceremony. This dance was traditionally performed to trample down the tall grass to create space and visibility for people to have a tribal meeting or ceremony. Fittingly, these were also themes of the retail event, including an explicit emphasis on setting intentions, being thoughtful, and building relationships. We discussed critical topics related to providing opportunity to frontline retail employees – systems change, equity and inclusion, raising worker voice, and engaging employers. The Retail Opportunity Network provides an important space for individuals and organizations to come together to develop strategies to help frontline workers advance into higher positions.

President's Corner: It’s Not Just the Number of People Working. It’s About Workers.

Despite many months of low unemployment (and another drop in November’s jobs report) less than 50% of U.S. workers feel that they are in good jobs according to a Gallup poll of job quality; most companies aren’t raising wages and benefits for low-wage workers. The Private Sector Job Quality Index has shown that job quality has decreased almost 15% over the past 30 years. So while job creation may be plentiful, the hard truth is that many of these jobs are not good jobs. As we celebrate the holidays, we want you to keep in mind the reality of workers’ lives. It’s hard to ignore the fact that for many people, work is neither satisfying nor sustaining. There is a lot of talk about how to fix this mess, but not enough action. The time to act is now, because not doing anything has real-world effects on millions of workers.
We welcome your thoughts and feedback. Please let us know what you think by emailing me directly at

Can You Solve the Paradox?

For some workers in Northeast Ohio, their daily commute totals three hours. Decades of sprawl in the region has resulted in a situation where workers live far from jobs. Compounding that issue, public transportation is limited, meaning that you need a car to get to work. The result is a transportation paradox, where without a car, you can’t get and keep a job. But without a job, you can’t get a car. Enter the Paradox Prize, a Shark Tank-like competition investing in micro-solutions to reduce commute times. Learn about the Paradox Prize and the greater systemic problems the Fund for Our Economic Future are trying to solve from the latest blog from Bryan Lindsley, the National Fund’s director of systems change.


#LIAW - Catapult Forward

Yesterday, our partners in Boston, SkillWorks, cohosted another event around Project Catapult, an initiative focused on investing in the next generation of workforce development. In a newly published report from SkillWorks in partnership with Monitor Institute by Deloitte, the case is made that the leading practices of best in class workforce organizations can serve as a model for others to adopt and adapt. But, adopting these leading practices requires funds to build or acquire new capacities. Learn more about the role philanthropy can play in to support better outcomes for jobseekers and employers and improve the overall workforce and employment ecosystem.


A New Face at the National Fund


Meet Caroline

Say hello to the newest member of the National Fund team! Caroline Corona joins us as a program associate supporting projects to make jobs better and activate employers to invest in their workforce. Prior to joining the National Fund, Caroline’s work focused on housing and mobility in Columbus, Ohio, and economic development at both the local and national level. Caroline earned degrees in public management, leadership and policy, and city and regional planning from The Ohio State University. We are excited to have her on the team.

Apprenticeship in Action


In November, the National Fund Board of Directors and Partners Council met in Seattle where we were hosted by our network partner community, the Seattle-King Workforce Funders Collaborative, housed in the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County. Part of the meeting was a site visit to the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee at South Seattle College, Georgetown. This visit included a meeting with program leaders, an instructor, and several participants in the manufacturing pre-apprenticeship program, including Selene. This 10-12 week, recognized pre-apprenticeship program offers a solid foundational career pathway into aerospace and advanced manufacturing apprenticeship opportunities. People who successfully complete the program are prepared to find entry-level positions in advanced manufacturing.

Spotlight on Best Practices: Career Coaching

One advantage to working in healthcare is that it offers multiple career paths that lead to good jobs. But that only matters if everyone is familiar with various positions and pathways. This is why career coaches are so vital.

Coaching connects frontline workers to opportunities and resources to advance. It also helps them feel valued and supported in the workplace – both of which are important elements of a good job.
Learn more about Career Coaching and many other best practices in the CareerSTAT Resource Center.


#ICYMI – Making Youth Apprenticeships Equitable and Effective: Lessons from North Carolina

This webinar highlights the findings of a study by the North Carolina Justice Center, also titled “Making Youth Apprenticeships Equitable and Effective: Lessons From North Carolina.” Speakers include report authors Allan Freyer and Pamela Howze, as well as Elizabeth Standafer, Youth Apprenticeship Coordinator at ApprenticeshipNC.

Blog Roundup

To Put Stakeholder Capitalism to Work, Big Companies Should Focus on Small and Mid-sized BusinessesFred Dedrick
Can You Solve the Paradox?Bryan Lindsley
Workforce Development Leaders Tackle Job QualityFred Dedrick
Apprenticeship is a Win-Win for Workers and Employers
Parkland Health & Hospital System: From the Moment They Walk in the Door
Co-Invest for Impact: Building a Stronger Community

Success Across the Network

The National Fund's network of 33 partner communities are continually testing and scaling new efforts to help workers, companies, and communities succeed. Our local partners are strengthening their regions' workforce system, preparing workers for good jobs and helping companies hire and retain talented employees. Recent stories include:

News From the Field
Meet Nick Walhert, Hy-Vee’s new retention specialist. Hy-Vee and Central Iowa Works are co-investing to fund this position. Nick is working with Hy-Vee’s corporate HR department to figure out how to leverage labor market data and break down worker barriers. He is also working at four individual Hy-Vee locations in central Iowa to improve recruitment and retention. This program is based on the highly successful initiative with UnityPoint Health Des Moines.

Media and Articles

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