STATE COLLEGE — The Chamber of Business & Industry of Centre County (CBICC) and its educational and community partners are gearing up to recognize the inaugural group of students earning the designation of CentreREADY, according to a press release.
CentreREADY is the CBICC’s local workforce preparedness and certification initiative developed in partnership with all five of Centre County’s public school districts and its two career and technical training institutions. CentreREADY focuses on assessing proficiency in six “core” (or basic) skills that local employers say are essential for their employees to posses. Those skills are work ethic; tactfulness/manners; team work; communication; critical thinking/problem solving; and understanding supervision/world of work.
“We are honored to celebrate the achievements of students who took it upon themselves to earn the CentreREADY designation,” said CBICC President and CEO Vern Squier, CCE, PaCCE. “We commend their desire to excel at job attributes that are so critical in today’s workplace. Our businesses have said that they need employees with strong core skills. As a community response to local workforce needs, CentreREADY is beginning to build that pool of potential job candidates.”
The program was formally launched in September 2018 and softly rolled out in schools over the fall/winter months. Students will have the opportunity to enroll in CentreREADY at the start of the 2019-20 school year. Sixty-nine students voluntarily enrolled in CentreREADY this year, the first group to earn the designation after successfully meeting assessment criteria developed by their individual school districts based on current 21st century workforce curriculum offerings and experiences.
“Everyone involved in developing the CentreREADY initiative was encouraged by the early interest shown by students,” said Jennifer Myers, CBICC vice president of economic development, noting that most school districts met their year-one enrollment expectations. “We are confident that interest in and desire to earn the designation will only grow next year and in subsequent years as more awareness is raised about the value of obtaining CentreREADY skills.”
On May 3, the CBICC hosted a reception for students earning the designation and their parents. Individual school districts will recognize CentreREADY students at year-end award ceremonies and at graduation, where all CentreREADY designees will receive/wear a bright green cord denoting their achievement.
Squier said the list of local and area employers that have already signed on as CentreREADY supporters continues to grow.
“Businesses are welcome to share job openings with the CBICC in an attempt to connect them with CentreREADY individuals where possible,” he added. “We also encourage employers to display the CentreREADY logo in employment advertising and look for the CentreREADY seal on resumes and job applications submitted directly by applicants.”
For more information about CentreREADY visit www.centreready.org.