Thursday, September 18, 2008

Preparing for Tomorrow’s Workplace In Pittsburgh

Thank you to Karrie Valauri of AARP Foundation WorkSearch for submitting this very timely information for our blog. The Pittsburgh "Hire the Older Worker" Job Fair, part of the national series of job fairs in partnership between The Employment Guide, and the AARP Foundation WorkSearch, is coming October 1st at the Mellon Arena.Interested in Changing Careers? Interested in Remaining Marketable in the Workforce?Are you Unemployed or Underemployed?By 2010, one in three workers will be over the age of 50. As the relative proportion of younger workers declines, attracting and retaining experienced and reliable workers will be as important as ensuring that experienced workers are prepared to meet the skills in demand of the 21st century workplace.AARP Foundation is dedicated to creating new opportunities for individuals to re-enter the workforce or to remain in the workforce. To assist individuals with obtaining and maintaining the needed skill sets for employability today and in the future, AARP Foundation has developed WorkSearch Programs.AARP WorkSearch Assessment is an on-line instrument that helps the experienced, mature worker remain in or re-enter the workforce. It identifies work interests, personal characteristics and transferable skills. It offers quick tests to determine if one has the right skills for a job, online training programs to fill skill gaps, and job opportunities by zip code.The WorkSearch Assessment System encompasses over 1200 job specific on-line courses, eighty of which are certified, and 75% of all job titles in the Bureau of Labor Statistics job bank are represented. It is available at no cost to experience job seekers of all ages and income levels.“WorkSearch is an excellent tool to help you to focus in on the type of job you want, to evaluate your skills and to recognize skill gaps,” said to Roberta Davis, Employment Specialist for WorkSearch.New job opportunities, however, often require additional skills, time and money. The right education and training can sometimes be out-of-reach, especially if you have limited financial resources.Through the Foundation’s Training Assistance Program – the AARP Foundation is providing financial support for training to adult workers (40+) who have incomes that are at or below the median income for their community, and who are interested in training to remain in or re-enter the workforce. Because not everyone has the same interests or learns the same way, the AARP Foundation has established a number of different options, including on-line learning, classroom, and employer-based training to help people gain the skills they need to be competitive for today’s jobs.Mature workers are being certified in many disciplines through the on-line certifications, including medical coding and billing, project management and technical writing. Classroom training has encompasses nationally recognized Customer Service certification, Quickbooks, and much more. Special on-line opportunities to obtain teaching certifications and bachelor’s degree in the accounting field are also available.The third program offered locally through WorkSearch is the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP). This service provides paid training opportunities for unemployed residents of Allegheny County who are 55 years of age or older, who meet income guidelines and are currently seeking employment. Individuals train at non-profit organizations to obtain the experience and skill sets needed to become more marketable.Past participant, Geraldine McCorkle, is now employed and refers to SCSEP as an “excellent program for seniors to get going and keep going. Thank you.”AARP is committed to assisting the mature workers with making informed choices regarding employment interests and options, and meeting employment goals. It recognizes that what we do today, we may not be interested in doing or physically capable of doing five, ten years from now. Our skill sets may not correspond to the needs of tomorrow’s employers.AARP Foundation also supports a National Employer Team for those employers who are interested in securing and maintaining a mature, skilled workforce.So whether you are an employer interested is retaining a mature workforce, or an individual interested in changing careers, remaining marketable, or re-entering the job market, learn more about how AARP Foundation WorkSearch can help you achieve your goals.Prepare today for tomorrow’s workforce…let AARP Foundation WorkSearch help you. Contact the local AARP Foundation WorkSearch office at 412-271-1580, or visit

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Fall Pittsburgh Diversity Employment and Career Education Expo Coming October 1st

The autumn edition of the Pittsburgh Diversity Employment and Career Education Expo is set for October 1st from 10:00AM to 3:00PM at Mellon Arena. A company list will be posted when we get to about 2 weeks out from the event, but expect 30-40 companies and schools to be in attendance. As part of the National Employ the Older Worker Job Fair Series in conjunction with AARP Foundation WorkSearch, this event will also be held in conjunction with the Allegheny County Department of Veteran’s Affairs and The Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh. All ages are welcome and encouraged to attend. No pre-registration is required and admission is free to all job seekers. We only ask that you come dressed for success and bring plenty of resumes. Parking at the arena, if you drive, costs from $5.95 to $7.95 for all day depending on which lot you use. Of course, Mellon Arena is serviced very well by public transportation, making this event easy to get to. All job seekers who attend will be eligible to win one of 4 $50.00 gas cards to be given away at the top of each hour -11:00AM, 12:00 noon, 1:00PM and 2:00PM. As you come into the job fair (enter gate 10) you will be given a ticket to be used for the drawings. Companies will primarily be looking for hourly, entry level up to mid-level skilled positions in Healthcare, Nursing, Sales, Customer Service, Social Services, Retail, Hospitality, Finance / Banking, the Building Trades and more.