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Workforce Readiness Committee
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The Central Iowa SHRM Workforce Readiness Committee has been busy building relationships around our new mission for 2018: Based upon employment market trends, this committee will foster partnerships with community organizations to help connect and engage Iowa’s future workforce with colleges, apprenticeships, vocational skill training offerings, and employers as they prepare to enter the workforce. Within the past six months, this committee has created relationships with the following organizations:

  1. iJag – iJag is a non-profit organization that connects businesses with youth to help with dropout prevention while providing education around post-high school options. Our committee recently had three members participate in a career event for their participants. They are looking to include us in upcoming events as well.

  2. Boys and Girls Club of Central Iowa – Boys and Girls Club of Central Iowa is a program that is offered before and after school as well as during the summers which provides structure and education around social and career related topics. There is a major opportunity to partner with this organization on the development of curriculum that will help to prepare temporary contract workers that will help to build the Facebook data center in Altoona. The curriculum would consist of workforce readiness topics including professionalism in the work place, the importance of attendance, resume building, interviewing, etc.

  3. Junior Achievement – Junior Achievement is an organization that works with k-12th grade students to foster entrepreneurial and work-readiness opportunities for the youth it serves. This organization has a “career day” that will consist of an event similar to a job fair where elementary age students get to attend the fair to meet with the different organizations and learn about the types of jobs they hire for as well as what they do within the community. At this time, our committee is discussing different events that could also help to create a full day of learning for participants.

  4. Iowa Works Registered Apprenticeship program – This program helps to connect companies seeking qualified and skilled individuals with a qualified workforce. This program has hundreds of different identified positions that are available for companies to essentially train people for their jobs while also investing in that employee’s future. With unemployment low, this helps to bridge that gap while offering customized training, qualified on-the job training for participants, and the employee earns a paycheck from day one. The opportunity we have is to educate employers on the opportunity they have to participate in this program.

  5. Local Community Schools – CI-SHRM has partnered with many local school districts on career readiness events for many years. This year we have an exciting opportunity to volunteer our expertise at a multi-district professional development day. Our partners are seeking 35 volunteers to participate in an event which brings together Waukee, Johnston, and Norwalk Community School Districts. This professional development day is scheduled for September 18. Please let Melissa Heikes know if you are interested in more information by emailing her at
Our committee is very excited about these partnerships and the impact CI-SHRM will have on the organizations as well as the participants that benefit from these organizations. If you would like to get involved in any of the above mentioned, please contact Melissa Heikes, VP of the Workforce Readiness Committee at