Several businesses support ACT Work Ready Communities initiative

A signing ceremony was recently held at Hagerstown Community College to recognize the first five businesses to show support for the county-wide initiative to become a part of ACT Work Ready Communities.

(November 26, 2018) – A signing ceremony was recently held at Hagerstown Community College to recognize the first five businesses to show support for the county-wide initiative to become a part of ACT Work Ready Communities.

Officials at Amcor Flexibles, High Rock Studios, Hub Labels, Jamison Door, and Manpower signed their support in recognition of the importance of using the ACT WorkKeys assessment.

Hagerstown Community College President Jim Klauber introduced the idea at a community meeting in September, following his successful experience with the program in other communities.

In November, several community stakeholders, including HCC, Washington County Department of Business Development, Washington County Public Schools, Washington County Chamber of Commerce, Washington County Free Library, Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, and Western Maryland Consortium, attended a conference in Little Rock, Ark., to learn more about ACT Work Ready Communities. This group is taking the lead to attain commitment from 85 businesses needed to earn the designation.

The ACT Work Ready Communities designation empowers states, regions, and counties with data, processes, and tools that drive economic growth. Participants leverage the ACT WorkKeys National Career Readiness Certificate to measure and close the skills gap, and build common frameworks that link, align, and match their workforce development efforts.

The career readiness assessments help employers identify employees whose skill levels match their needs. The assessment focuses on three areas: applied math, workplace documents, and graphic literacy. From the assessment, potential employees earn a certificate, based on three levels of achievement, which is used to identify the best match between employer and employee.

To learn more about the effort to attain the Work Ready Communities designation in Washington County, contact Theresa Shank, HCC’s dean of continuing education and workforce development, at tmshank@hagerstowncc.edu or 240-500-2476.

Pictured at the signing, seated from left, are: Bob Jeffers, of Manpower; Mary Heizer, of High Rock Studios; and Mikel Thomas, of Amcor Flexibles. Standing, from left, are: Rob Slocum, of Washington County Government; Mary Baykan, of Washington County Free Library; Theresa Shank, of HCC; Kathleen O'Connell, of the Washington County Free Library; Maryland Sen. Andrew Serafini; Jim Klauber, of HCC; Austin Abraham, of HCC; Peggy Pugh, of WCPS; John Williamson, of HCC; Debora Gilbert, of Western Maryland Consortium; and Linda Spence, of Washington County Government.

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