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KRA Monthly Spotlight!

February: A Month for Celebration  February 1926 marked the launching of Negro History Week, which in February 1976, evolved into Black History Month. February also marks the month that KRA celebrated its own history-making milestone—40 years’ service dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and strengthening the communities in which we live. Knowlton R. Atterbeary, President & CEO, founded the firm, convinced that the key to unlocking the door to sustainable community economic independence was linked inextricably to a skilled and reliable workforce, which became his life’s mission. KRA is the only Black-owned National Leader in Workforce Development, providing Career
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KRA Baltimore City Overcomes Physical Barriers to Service During Pandemic

KRA operates the Work Participation, Placement, and Support Services Program for the Baltimore City Department of Social Services for a revolving caseload of approximately 400 customers. Last month, in addition to having already uploaded Workforce Readiness Workshops in May 2020, for customers to access through Google Classroom,  KRA began offering a Virtual Soft Skills Training Program, since traditional classroom settings, for large groups, are not feasible due to physical-distancing restrictions in Maryland. Greg Alexander, Program Manager, states, “Using Zoom allows many customers to attend ‘live’ classes that are engaging, interactive, and most of all safe, from their computers, mobile phones,
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New Employ NV Business Hubs Now Part of KRA/Las Vegas OSCC Operation

Sylvia Henry, KRA Operations Manager, Las Vegas One-Stop Career Centers (OSCC), reports, “When Workforce Connections (WC) selected KRA to manage the OSCC operation, we offered services for WIOA, Welfare and Supportive Services, and Community Service Block Grant jobseekers through one Comprehensive OSCC site and a network of library-affiliates that had expanded to 10 sites by January 2018. Two years later, we found ourselves in the grip of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, fueling an economic downturn that has devastated businesses nationwide. To provide assistance and support to Las Vegas-region employers during these challenging times, a multi-partner collaboration—WC/KRA, the Nevada Department of
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KRA Chicago Supports South Shore COVID-19 Grant Program

When the federal Department of Health and Human Services declared the COVID-19 pandemic a national public-health emergency, KRA clients, including the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership (The Partnership) were eligible to apply, through States, for Dislocated Worker Grant/Disaster Recovery Employment (DWG/DRE) funding. Awarded by the Secretary of the Department of Labor, these grants provide disaster-relief employment and employment-related services for WIOA-eligible Dislocated Workers affected by major workforce displacements, including temporary or permanent layoffs due to COVID-19. The Partnership selected KRA to support the South Shore Works Planning and Preservation Coalition that operates the DWG/DRE-funded South Shore Community Wellness Fellow Program, which
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KRA San Diego Airs Pandemic-Relevant Podcasts

In March 2016, the San Diego Metro Region Career Centers—now a Countywide program operated by KRA for the San Diego Workforce Partnership (SDWP)—launched its first major online program, Searching in San Diego, the official SDWP Podcast for on-demand access to up-to-date “workforce topics, trends, and tips” for both jobseekers and employers. To date, 92 Podcasts have aired, co-hosted by Diana Saldivar, KRA Career Centers Brand Manager and Doug Foresta, Workforce180 Director of Podcast Services and Communications, and supported by KRA/SDWP Career- and Business-Services specialists, who frequently contribute their personal experiences as well as their professional expertise. For example, in the
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A KRA Spotlight! Story

A KRA Customer’s Journey from Job Seeker to Job Developer March 2019: Shawnda Walker enrolled in the Work Participation, Placement, and Support Services Program operated by KRA for the Baltimore City Department of Social Services. During Orientation, the Operations Manager was impressed with her demeanor and professionalism, passing her resume on to the Program Manager, Greg Alexander, who needed to fill an unpaid Intern position in the Business Services Department. April 2019: KRA offered Ms. Walker the Internship, to which Mr. Alexander commented, “Not only did she ‘check all the boxes’ in meeting the position’s technical requirements, I felt her
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KRA/Reno Blends In-person and On-line Service Delivery

Operated by KRA for NevadaWorks, the Northern Nevada Workforce Board, the American Job Center of Nevada (AJCN), which due to COVID-19 restrictions discontinued public access to the facility in March, resumed in-person services in September. Mike Smith, KRA Program Manager, commented, “Since we reopened, after the 6-month hiatus, we discovered that many current and new customers really need assistance in developing basic computer skills, as well as writing resumes and preparing for job interviews. We were fortunate to find a one-stop solution, New Horizons Computer Learning Centers, right in our own Reno Town Mall ‘backyard’, and negotiated with them to upload
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KRA Virtual Learning Approach to Service Delivery

For the Baltimore City Department of Social Services (BCDSS), KRA operates the Work Participation, Placement, and Support Services Program, which provided a wide range of in-person services for a caseload of more than 400 customers—until state-mandated COVID-19 prevention measures went into effect March 17, 2020. Since many customers have little-to-no work history, or have been out of the workforce for a long time, KRA’s Workforce Readiness Workshops (WRW) are an integral component of preparing customers for sustainable employment opportunities. Gregory Alexander, Program Manager, commented, “Before COVID-19 forced us to close our office and transition staff to work-from-home, about 100 customers
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Nevada Governor Appoints KRA Program Manager to Conflict-Resolution Board

KRA congratulates Michael Smith, Program Manager of our Reno-based American Job Center of Nevada (AJCN), on his appointment by the Honorable Stephen F. Sisolak to serve out the unexpired term of a retired Government Employee- Management Relations Board member. His appointment became effective at the October 27 Board meeting, which in response to COVID-19 restrictions was convened via video conferencing.  After completing the 8-month balance of his predecessor’s term, Mr. Smith will begin his 4-year term on July 1, 2021. He joined KRA in September 2019, following a dedicated 32-year career as a Teacher, Coach, Student Support Services Coordinator, Assistant
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OJT…A Win-Win Opportunity for KRA Business- and Career-Services Customers

KRA’s proprietary Knowledge2Career (K2C)) Academy offers Out-of-School Youth customized career-development services, including on-the-job training (OJT) linked directly to employment with companies in high-demand industries. For Capital Workforce Partners, the North Central Connecticut WDB, KRA operates a K2C Academy, in partnership with the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT).  Targeting the Manufacturing Industry, Tooling U-SME provides coursework and certification, with hands-on instruction provided through OJT agreements with regional employers. On March 17, 2020, KRA introduced a new K2C cohort, with 19 students—one of whom was Manuel Otero—who had passed qualifying Mechanical Aptitude Tests. Tony Harrington, KRA Operations Manager, commented, “Manuel expressed concern about a
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