The Workforce Development Committee has been busy since we hosted the Workforce Development Roundtable in March. We’ve been meeting with potential partners, learning more about possible funding resources, and setting the stage for some exciting activities in the months ahead. Here is a summary of what the committee has been up to recently:
• We organized a great call with Jackie Alf from I Build America – Ohio to learn about some of the things their
group has been working on. She also educated us about the entity in New Hampshire — the State Workforce Innovation Board (SWIB) — responsible for administering the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funds and overseeing the Governor’s state workforce development initiatives.
• We organized a follow-up meeting with Joe Doiron of New Hampshire Works, where we learned more about the SWIB. I offered and accepted to serve a two-year term on the SWIB Board to ensure that the construction industry has a seat at the table.
• We organized an in-person meeting with one of the engineering classes at New Hampshire Technical Institute (NHTI). Chris Robert, Will Hess, and I attended the event to share information about the skills needed to succeed, wages, and different career paths that horizontal construction offers.
• We participated in the Transportation Construction Coalition event held in Washington DC and attended Capitol Hill meetings with all four of New Hampshire’s delegation offices. We’re happy to report that the transportation infrastructure staffers we met were well informed, and we had some excellent discussions on the workforce development topic.
• A meeting was held with Terri Tedeschi and Charles Lewis from the New Hampshire Department of Education Vocational Rehabilitation program. Vocational Rehabilitation is a program assisting people with disabilities to find jobs that are suitable matches for them and providing the support necessary for those individuals to succeed. It was an informative meeting that broadened our thinking about diversity and inclusion.
• We also met with Nicole Levesque and Jeffrey Beard of the New Hampshire Department of Education (NHDOE). Nicole is the Work Based Learning Coordinator for the state. DOE has a mobile vehicle that they use for career promotion. They were very excited about the prospect of including Good Roads in some of their events.
• We attended the Mountain of Demos event at Mount Sunapee hosted by the New Hampshire Road Agents Association. The Mountain of Demos is an event for local road agents to visit with equipment, tools, and services vendors. While at the event, we met with UNH’s Technology Transfer Center to discuss the idea of doing a bus tour for high school and college students that show an interest in the highway construction industry. Good Roads has done bus tours for our elected officials many times over the years, so this type of event would be relatively easy for us to organize.
• While all that was going on, Brenda was hard at work at the office updating the Good Roads website — which now includes a blog area dedicated to our Workforce Development initiative.
Some of the upcoming projects that the committee has planned include establishing Instagram and TikTok accounts and a YouTube channel for posting workforce development video productions. We also plan to produce some printed materials that we can distribute at New Hampshire Construction Career Days in September.
If you are interested in learning more about this effort and staying up to date, please contact Brenda Clemons at the Good Roads office: firstname.lastname@example.org. Ask to be put on the Workforce Development contact list.