Pennsylvania nonprofit pairs schools, businesses to keep talent local
- A new Pennsylvania nonprofit, the Fayette Leadership Fund, is working to partner students with local businesses for apprenticeship opportunities to boost local employment, the Herald-Standard reported.
- Garry Sisson, the organization's founder and a local business owner, is working as a liaison between local high schools and businesses to create a program that will place students before they graduate — an example of the growing partnerships between public and private employers throughout the country.
- The Fund’s first employer, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, is the third largest employer in Fayette County, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor. The resort plans to offer on-the-job experience in a range of disciplines in the hospitality management and services area, including culinary, food and beverage, engineering, grounds keeping and golf course technology, the Herald-Standard reported. Its hope is to become a "hotbed for hospitality talent."
Employers are spending more on training, hoping to upskill and retain workers. And research shows employees are responding positively; the more training they receive, the more they want, recent studies show. But employers are increasingly realizing they can't handle the weight of development alone, especially in certain industries, leading many to partner with public institutions such as local schools and governments to bridge the gap. Manufacturing, for example, is struggling to overcome an image gap that begins all the way in early education; partnerships with schools is one way employers are attempting to overcome it.
Training partnerships can work for private businesses, too. Recently, a senior living center turned to the hospitality industry to train their own employees on how to deliver five-star service to residents.
Training is now a top priority for employees, as more than half of workers report they’d quit a job that didn’t provide opportunities to grow and develop. The hospitality industry, traditionally associated with few training opportunities for staff members, is adapting to employee demands. And with turnover at all-time highs, particularly in the hospitality industry, businesses are leveraging training to attract and retain staff.
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