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BDI Receives Grant to Support Workforce Development Initiative

BDI Receives Grant to Support Workforce Development Initiative
For Immediate Release
Burke County, N.C. (May 5, 2017)- Burke Development Inc. (BDI) has been awarded a grant from the newly created “Maximize Carolina” program. The $75,000 grant (with 15% of the amount being provided by matching funds from project partners) will assist in kicking off Phase II of the “Burke County Workforce Marketing” initiative.
Phase I of the project, was completed in November of 2016, establishing that there is a lack of understanding on what opportunities are available in the county and that locating the information when available is extremely difficult. This data was developed through a series of surveys and interviews with local citizens.
Phase II supported by the Maximize Carolina Grant will begin to address the gaps in information on jobs available in the marketplace now and growth areas anticipated in the future. It will tie these opportunities to the training required to successfully attain these positions (much of the training being available through Western Piedmont Community College) and provide information on possible assistance with funding the required training.
The campaign is being spear-headed and funded by partners from across the county, region and state, including: local business and industry, Western Piedmont Community College, Burke County Public Schools, Burke County Chamber of Commerce, Western Piedmont Workforce Development, BDI and others. Work will begin immediately to create the content for a robust website and a multi-media marketing plan aimed at providing needed information to primarily middle-school students and their parents. Plans are to expand the reach of the program as more resources become available.
Alan Wood, President and CEO of BDI had the following to say concerning the grant and the campaign “We appreciate the assistance provided by the NC Department of Commerce to our efforts. With the rapid changes taking place in technology in the workplace, it is increasingly important for all students to continue their education beyond high school. With all our partners engaged in these efforts, we believe we can close the information gap that exist and assist more of our students in finding a career that is right for them.”
The Maximize Carolina Sector grants are designed to “address skills gaps in robust and emerging industry sectors” according to the NC Commerce website. These grants can be used to address challenges such as applicants lacking specific skills, lack of sector brand awareness and work-based learning opportunities.
About Burke Development, Inc.
Burke Development, Inc. (BDI) is a nonprofit organization supported by private and public funding that is charged with accelerating economic growth in Burke County. BDIworks with industry leaders, site selection consultants, government agencies and other entities to facilitate expansion strategies for existing businesses and recruit target industries to Burke County. For more information about BDI visit www.BurkeDevInc.com.
Alan Wood

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