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Workforce Development Is in Full Force in Montgomery County, PA

By Livability on May 25, 2023

businesses along the river in Montgomery County PA
Courtesy of Montgomery County Commerce Department

In Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, workforce development programs are not only helping residents find a job — they’re helping them succeed throughout their careers.

“For any business to thrive, it needs a strong workforce,” says Jennifer Butler, executive director of the Montgomery County Workforce Development Board (MontcoWorks) and deputy director of workforce development for the Montgomery County Commerce Department. “We have really focused on developing a talent pipeline and preparing the next generation of workers to make sure that businesses in Montgomery County will not only continue to thrive, but that the workforce can grow with them.”

Career fairs, on-the-job training and apprenticeship programs,  career readiness workshops and career counseling are just a few of the ways MontcoWorks is supporting workforce development — plus, a  solid partnership with Montgomery County Community College (MCCC).

“Our connection with the community college is so important because we can keep a pulse on the needs of employers and help the college accommodate that,” Butler says. “We also have connections with our Montgomery County school districts, so to employers, we can boast that strong relationship from secondary education to post-secondary education.”

Dr. Victoria Bastecki-Perez, president of MCCC, echoes that sentiment. The school offers its own workforce development programs, with both two- and four-year curriculums available.

“MCCC serves as the hub for workforce development education and training in Montgomery County and the southeastern Pennsylvania region,” Bastecki-Perez says. “We continually collaborate with the county as well as businesses to make sure our program portfolio is relevant, effective and forward-thinking.”

Butler adds that the variety of jobs needed runs the gamut, catering to all interests.

“In all of southeastern Pennsylvania, nursing is probably the area we need the most people,” she notes. “However, in Montgomery County alone, it’s actually software developers.”

David Zellers Jr., director of commerce for Montgomery County, says that team approach is proving to be successful.

“Talent attraction and talent development are at the core of our economic development ethos,” Zellers says. “Our workforce development system and educational institutions are integral to success and complementary to our incredible diversity of place, growing regional infrastructure, and commitment to working with partners to ensure Montgomery County is the place to live, work, learn and invest.”

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