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Campbellsville Kentucky Career Center exterior

‘We don’t just get people jobs. We get them careers.’

The welcoming doors of Kentucky Career Center is open to all who want access to their programs and trainings. The KCC office in Taylor County is located at 1311 East Broadway, in the Elmhurst Plaza.

Job hunting can be difficult, from navigating applications to gaining new skills, but luckily, the Kentucky Career Center (KCC) can assist with all aspects of employment.

The KCC reopened its doors once again last month after closing in April 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Career Manager Jenny Hughes said their main goal for their office is to get back to the public and let the community have access to all the programs and services they offer.

Job services are their priority in all areas. Members of the community can access the office to use their computers to fill out online or paper applications. Hughes said they are focused on filling job openings and steering the workforce in the right direction.

“And these are full-time positions. We are not a temporary agency,” Hughes said. “We don’t just get people jobs. We get them careers.”

Outside of job hunting and applications, KCC offers programs, trainings and grants to aid the transition into a new career. Hughes said all of their services are free and the resources offer an ability to gain to a self-sufficient wage.

A few of the programs and grants that KCC offers are:

  • The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) is a federal grant to assist with training for high-demand careers such as transportation and nursing. The trainings can be as short as six weeks or up to two years depending on the position.
  • The Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) provides opportunities to individuals with disabilities to assist with reentry or entry into employment. It gives training and tools to become more independent in the workplace.
  • SHIP or State Health Insurance Assistance Program helps Medicare beneficiaries across the 10-county area.  The assistance extends to Medicare enrollment open from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7.
  • Kentucky Farmworker Program (KFP) is an employment and training program. The program serves farmers, farmhands, and their families who are seeking to improve their work skills or want “greater financial stability that comes with training and education,” according to Katie Fergerson of KY Farmers Programs, Inc. 
  • Skills U is designed to aid with GED, college, and career preparation. The program also helps with testing for education and businesses as well as English as a Second Language (ESL).

Hughes urges community members to look into the resources KCC offers now that it is back open to the community. Before closing in 2020, the center would get 300 to 700 guests in their offices each month. However, last month’s number of patrons totaled 78.

“People are getting ready to get back to work,” Hughes said. “We are trying to bounce back and to go all out with our resources.”

Despite all the employment programs, the Campbellsville KCC does not have unemployment insurance staff. Members of the community may use a KCC computer to file but do not have staff to assist in the process. 

KCC can be involved in all parts of the career search. Hughes said the center’s goal is to find all the needs of the workforce and aid applicants through their career process. 

“They need something to help them get going and to further their careers. And we are here to help,” Hughes said. “It’s all about finding them a career they love.”

For more information, visit www.kcc.ky.gov or in person at 1311 East Broadway, Campbellsville in Elmhurst Plaza

Aaron Poynter

The Cumberlands Workforce Development Board (CWDB) is pleased to announce that Aaron Poynter has been named a 40-Under-40 award recipient by the Young Professionals of Lake Cumberland (YPLC). The recognition profiles young professionals throughout the Lake Cumberland region who have made significant impacts in their profession and communities.

Aaron is the Director of Reentry Programming for the South Central and Cumberlands Workforce Development Boards. Working for the workforce development boards, he has been instrumental in the development of programming targeted at reducing and eliminating barriers to employment for individuals across the 23-county region. Often these obstacles include housing, training, access to food, and other basic needs, which have to be met simultaneously while achieving successful employment.

"The Workforce Board is extremely proud of all of Aaron’s contributions, his commitment, and passion for the work in Re-entry," said Myra Wilson, Director of Workforce Development, Cumberlands Workforce Development Area. "He is a pleasure to work with daily. He aspires others to achieve their dreams and goals by setting this example in his life. We are looking forward to launching other pilot programs that Aaron has partnered to develop for our 13 counties."

Aaron Poynter with awardAt the awards ceremony, held Saturday, October 23, 2021, at the Center for Rural Development in Somerset, Ky, two specific examples of Poynter's professional community involvement were highlighted as part of his recognition.

First, the awards panel pointed out Aaron's research, planning, and development of a web-based application – Kentucky Area Resources or www.KARES.us which assists in connecting locally based resources to individuals in need. The services are segmented by county and offer information on career training, health care, schools, government assistance, transportation, housing, child care, food needs, clothing, substance abuse, faith-based agencies, and more. This application was initially launched in Russell County and Hart County Kentucky with a goal to have the entire region connected within a year.

Second, it was noted how the CWDB's Re-Entry & Transformational Employment divisions through partnerships with Somerset Community College, Goodwill, and the Pulaski County Detention Center were able to send eight Pulaski County inmates through a Welders Certificate Program, provide resume/application assistance, host a mock interview, and provide clothing for interviews with two local employers. All eight inmates graduated from SCC's Workforce Re-entry program receiving welder's helper certificates.

Not only is Poynter an accomplished program leader, he also volunteers his time to serve others both professionally and within his community. Poynter gives his time to his community as a member of the United Way of South Central Kentucky Board of Directors, the Southern Kentucky Reentry Council Board of Directors, the Russell County Ethics Board, an assistant football/strength coach for Russell County High School, a Youth League volunteer coach, the Adult Sunday School Teacher and Outreach Director of Union Baptist Church, and many other community activities.

Aaron is a proud alumnus of Western Kentucky University (2015), The Kentucky Department of Criminal Justice Training (2014), and the Leadership Kentucky BRIGHT (2019) and Elevate (2021) programs.

His commitment to improving the community around him both professionally and personally makes him an outstanding member of the Lake Cumberland region, and the CWDB is proud to congratulate him on his 40-Under-40 award.

"We have so many talented young professionals in the region committed to community development, bettering the region or accomplishing great feats in their industry, and oftentimes, some of those individuals may not receive well-deserved recognition. That's what we want to do," stated Kelli Chaney Latham, 2021 YPLC Board President.

Annual 40-Under-40 events have become commonplace in larger metropolitan areas; however, the Lake Cumberland region has never formally recognized a group of young local standouts in one organized event. YPLC Board Members organized their first event to encourage young professionals to continue working to improve their region and industry.

 

Commonwealth Coders former students at work on computers.

Commonwealth Coders is a 16-week training course that prepares participants for a career as a Junior Web Developer. Commonwealth Coders registration is now open and training is set to start in January 2022. Generous financial aid is available and many will qualify for this training at little to no cost! The average base salary for a Jr. Web Developer is $67,791 annually (Source: Indeed, July 18, 2020).

Previous coding or computer training is not required: however, Algebra skills and a strong work ethic are greatly encouraged. 

There is no cost or obligation to apply. If you are interested in participating, please set aside approximately 20 minutes to complete this initial survey, making sure all of your responses are complete and comprehensive. While this is the first step toward becoming a student in the program, it is an important one. Please make your very best effort as spots will be limited. 

Commonwealth Coders debuted across the state in August 2021 as a collaborative effort between the South Central, Cumberlands, Bluegrass, and Northern Kentucky Workforce Boards. The success of the first classes and the growing demand for web developers, especially ones who can work remotely, led to the course’s expansion. 

To learn more and take the initial interest survey visit https://commonwealthcoders.com

Re-Entry program graduates

For eight Pulaski County inmates, Thursday marked a day of celebration and gratitude. Each inmate graduated from Somerset Community College’s Workforce Re-entry program, receiving welder’s helper certificates.

The Cumberlands Workforce Development Board Re-Entry & Transformational Employment divisions through partnerships with Somerset Community Technical College, Goodwill, and the Pulaski County Detention Center were able to send the inmates through the course, provide resume/application assistance, host a mock interview, were provided clothing for the interview as well as meet and interview with 2 local employers.

The next class will be entirely female and begin in early October.

Watch a WYMT Mountain News feature story on this initial class: https://www.wymt.com/2021/10/01/eight-pulaski-county-inmates-graduate-workforce-re-entry-program/

Good Will Fall Festival

SAVE THE DATE! Goodwill is having their Fall Festival (Job Fair) on Thursday, September 30, 2021 at the Center For Rural Development, 2282 South Highway 27, Suite 300 in Somerset, KY 42501. The Fair runs from 10am to 1pm with an Expungement clinic at 9am. This event is free and lunch will be provided to all who attend.

Employers and Community Agencies: If you would like to be part of this job fair, register online at: goodwillky.org/fallfestival

For our Expungement clinic, you can pre-register online at: goodwillky.org/expungements

Need a Job graphic with workers in various jobs.

Resources available to help jobless as pandemic unemployment programs end

FRANKFORT, Ky., (Aug. 30, 2021) — As federal pandemic unemployment insurance (UI) programs expire on Sept. 6, claimants who need help finding work or career services can turn to more than a dozen Kentucky Career Center offices across the commonwealth for help. 

Staff in each of the regional centers can provide job leads and job search assistance as well as adult education and vocational rehabilitation services, said Labor Cabinet Secretary Jamie Link. He also said staff in centers could provide information about apprenticeship opportunities and help career professionals overhaul and polish their resumes.

“Career center employees have a thumb on the pulse of the local economy in each region, and they know who is hiring and how to get people in touch,” Link said. “If you are looking for a job, it’s a great place to start, and everyone is welcome – those services do not require an appointment in most of the Kentucky Career Centers.”

Federal pandemic unemployment insurance benefit programs are set to expire nationwide on Sept. 6. Unemployment insurance claimants in Kentucky will no longer be able to claim benefits under any of the following federal pandemic programs: Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), or Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC). 

The last payable week for those programs in Kentucky is the week ending Sept. 4, regardless of the balance of the benefits remaining on individual UI claims. The Kentucky Office of Unemployment Insurance will ensure that claimants who are waiting to receive eligibility determinations will receive payments owed to them for all weeks before Sept. 6 for which they are eligible.

Claimants who are actively seeking employment are encouraged to follow the Kentucky Career Center on Facebook and Twitter, as well as the social media accounts of regional career centers to keep abreast of the latest job fairs and hiring events.

Special instructions:

  • Check with your local Kentucky Career Center to see if an appointment is needed* for job seeker assistance due to COVID-19.
  • Anyone attending an appointment must wear a mask at all times.
  • Photo identification is required to enter a KCC building.

* Note: Our Somerset and Campbellsville locations require appointments. Find your nearest location here: Career Center Locations

For more information or to find a Kentucky Career Center near you, visit https://kcc.ky.gov/

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