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Never has it been more essential to bring businesses and people together to nurture a thriving workforce. This has been a core service of CCEDC’s for decades, and in 2021-2022 our Workforce Development Team was hyper-focused on helping companies find and attract talent, and helping individuals gain the skills they need to pursue the careers of their dreams. This year, CCEDC was also proud to relaunch AgConnect, our in-demand agriculture industry partnership, as we continue to focus on building a workforce pipeline across all industries. Full steam ahead.

The Next Generation of Ag Leaders

If 2021-2022 had a silver lining when it came to workforce development, then ours was the relaunch of AgConnect. CCEDC’s agriculture industry partnership is back, aimed at growing opportunities for agribusinesses.

Agriculture Project Director Jodi Gauker hit the ground running, ensuring AgConnect was a partner with Chester County to launch its first agriculture economic development strategic plan. Then, with funds from the PA Dept. of Labor and Industry and PA Dept. of Community and Economic Development, AgConnect began training to support ag workers and youth career development experiences in ag, especially those directly linked to manufacturing.

“This is a year of rebuilding, reconnecting and reinvesting,” said CCEDC President and CEO Gary Smith. “But we’re also really focused on creating a more inclusive ag industry and being more creative in how we attract people to agriculture. So many skills cross industries.”

With the goal of inspiring workforce professionals to include ag in their hiring efforts, AgConnect is partnering with PA CareerLink offices across several counties. AgConnect also presented at the PA Workforce Development Association Conference in Hershey. Their title: “If You Ate Today, You Can Include Ag In Your Workforce Development Program.”

COVID completely changed the landscape for local food, and really highlighted the need for a local food system.
Jodi Gauker
CCEDC Agriculture Project Director

What a Year for Workforce Development!

Youth impacted
Participating organizations
Employees trained
Dislocated workers served
Health Care Heroes – Wawa & Maggie Moos

Health Care Connect treated healthcare workers at several partner agencies to more than 600 scoops of ice cream to thank them for all of their dedication and hard work serving our communities!

More than 40 top STEM-based companies engaged with 500+ young women in grades 5-10 at the 21st annual Girls Exploring Tomorrow’s Technology (GETT).

Funding from the PA Dept. of Labor and Industry, using Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act grant funds, supported the creation of the Coatesville Manufacturing Training Center within JGM, Inc.

High schoolers in our Career Connections Academy received white coats. This rite of passage welcomes them into training for careers in the medical field.

Amid our continued virtual collaboration, ITAG launched a new program, TECH Together, to foster peer-to-peer interaction. TECH Together is a series of online gatherings where small, focused groups of professionals share, collaborate, and work together on tech issues and challenges.

Each session introduced a particular topic for a candid roundtable discussion to share ideas, best practices, and solutions for overcoming common hurdles. Topics covered included ransomware, optimizing managed IT services, year-end reviews for tech teams, communication between tech and marketing teams, video conferencing trends and cryptocurrency and other digital assets.

Financing Chesco’s Future
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