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Preventing Workplace Accidents in the RVA

Preventing Workplace Accidents in the RVA

Preventing Workplace Accidents in the Greater Richmond Region ~ CCWA Provides FREE OSHA-10 Construction Training to Employers! ~ By Wes Smith, Interim Assistant Vice President for Workforce Development

Accidents are one thing, but deaths in the workplace are another. Did you know that in 2017 there were 4,674 worker fatalities in private industry? To make matters worse for the construction industry, 20.7% of these deaths were construction related. OSHA has stated that the leading causes of death (excluding traffic collisions) are caused by four primary accident areas, which they’ve titled the “Fatal Four.” These include falls, struck by object, electrocution, and caught-in/between. The “Fatal Four” are responsible for 59.9% of the deaths which occur in the construction industry. That percentage is why OSHA routinely holds more inspections on construction companies vs. other sectors. In 2018, there were over 32,000 inspections completed by OSHA.

Accidents are incredibly preventable when workers and employers put an emphasis on safety and set standards and responsibilities for safety protocols. Outside of death and accidents, there’s another reason for job seekers, employees, and employers to focus on safety. Simply put, it’s bad for business. When federal OSHA inspections are completed, most companies receive multiple citations. After compiling all of the data from these citations, OSHA was able to identify the most frequent citations. These include falls, hazard communication, scaffolding, ladders, respiratory protection, lockout/tag-out, powered industrial trucks, fall protection, machine guarding, and eye and face protection.

It is for the reasons mentioned above that the Community College Workforce Alliance (CCWA) has decided to engage with industries to get more Virginians certified in relevant and life-changing credentials. OSHA-10 Construction Certification involves ten hours of instruction, and typically comes at a financial cost to the individual or the employer. This cost barrier stops many individuals from receiving training each year. It’s a proven fact that individuals who are formally trained and certified are safer in the workplace not only for themselves but for everyone around them. A safe employee adds value in many ways to a company. This is why it’s normal to see construction and industrial companies make safety a top priority.

CCWA will be hosting its first free OSHA-10 Construction training class on April 15th & 16th. CCWA is doing this to give back to the community it serves, as well as addressing the importance of industry credentials and life-long learning in the workplace.

If your company is interested in attending or sending staff to this free certification training, then click on the link below for registration or contact us at 804-897-7602. Stay safe out there!

Register for CCWA’s FREE OSHA Class – April 15/16
5th Annual RVA LogistXGames June 13, 2019

5th Annual RVA LogistXGames June 13, 2019

CCWA is excited to partner with Colliers and other industry partners to host the 5th Annual Logistx Games to be held Thursday, June 13, 2019 (Location – Richmond Distribution Center. 4000 Carolina Ave, Richmond, VA 23222). The competition allows local logistics teams to showcase their skills and expertise in the supply chain and distribution industries – packaging and moving goods from warehouse to consumer.

The logistics industry is very competitive in Central Virginia, and the employees are the backbone of each company. The LogistX Games honors those companies and employees, while building awareness for new talent to enter the industry.

–Wes Smith, Interim AVP, Workforce Development

Proceeds from this year’s event will be allocated to support logistics certification scholarships for students at the Community College Workforce Alliance.

Four events sparked fierce competition and tested the teamwork, talent, efficiency and speed of each competing company. The games mirror the logistics work environment, with an added twist: Pallet Puzzle Sprint, Pallet Jack Relay, Pick/Pack Hurdle and Box Put.

To register your team, contact Laura Bradshaw at laura.bradshae@colliers.com. For sponsorship information, contact Wood Thornton at wood.thornton@colliers.com.


To join us in person, register here:

CCWA’s 2019 Summer Youth Camps

CCWA’s 2019 Summer Youth Camps

We’re excited to offer digital arts camps to the region’s youth – now in our seventh summer with industry experts, Black Rocket. While the Minecraft and ROBLOX camps continue to be a popular, our new offerings including Advanced RoboticsBattle Royale: Make Your First Fortnight® Style Video Game, Code Breakers and eSports Apprentice – YouTube® Streamers & Gamers build skills in a safe and fun environment at our campus locations.

These ten week-long offerings will boost creativity, collaboration and tech savvy for your student. A recent article by the Education Development Center (EDC), “The Future of Work: Three Ways to Prepare Now,” notes “…it’s about helping young people develop a comfort with using, modifying, and creating technologies, and developing the dispositions needed for future success that they will carry forward into the workforce.”

Students were able to upload their work to a website to share with parents, receive comments and access their progress. Returning students were able to create more advanced projects and build onto previous projects.

Download the 2019 Summer Camp flyer.

2019 Summer Camp Offerings:

NEW! Advanced Robotics      Fee: $185 

In this class learn to program a robot to overcome daily class challenges using visual and text-based programming.  You will see firsthand how your program translates into action as you attempt to control your robot sensors and maneuver around obstacles.  With your teammate, you will apply different coding concepts while using the scientific method to formulate, observe, experiment, test, and modify your robot. 

JUL 08-12 M–F Mornings WDCC: Register Now

App Attack!      Fee: $185 

Take the first steps into the world of mobile app design and customize your own game app! Using a specialized app and game development tool, students will explore the world of web-based (HTML5) mobile apps. In addition to learning the basics of mobile app design and game development, you will also see firsthand how the world of App publishing functions. 

JUN 24-28 M–F Mornings WDCC: Register Now

NEW! Battle Royale: Make Your First Fortnight® Style Video Game      Fee: $185 

Fans of Fortnite we need you! Instead of playing the game, design your own. Using a professional 3D game development software, build levels and assets inspired by popular battle royale games like Fortnite. This course includes cartoonish action and battle sequences. Student-created games will be available on a password protected Black Rocket website to share with friends and family. 

JUL 22-26 M–F Mornings WDCC: Register Now

NEW! Code Breakers      Fee: $185 

Calling all future coders, programmers, & designers! Learn the basics of coding languages like HTML, JavaScript, and CSS through a series of web projects and design challenges each day and be on your way to becoming the next tech star! Whether you want to be the next Mark Zuckerberg or the high school student who just made $1 million dollars for programming in his bedroom, this course has the essentials you need to begin your journey. Projects will be available on a Black Rocket website to share with friends and family. 

JUN 24-28 M–F Afternoons WDCC: Register Now

Drone Adventures      Fee: $185 

The Drones are here! Let the battles begin. In this hands on, interactive class you will learn how to fly and drive drone robots. Working in teams you will be able to code your drone to compete in missions that will prepare you for the ultimate team challenge at the end of the week. 

JUL 8-12 M–F Afternoons WDCC: Register Now

NEW! eSports Apprentice – YouTube® Streamers & Gamers      Fee: $185 

Whether you want to be the next pro gamer, streamer, or gamecaster this course will teach you the basics to get started! No longer just a hobby, eSports is the fastest growing career for the next generation. Over 400 million people watched YouTube videos and Twitch streams of video game competitions this year alone! In this course, students will develop competitive game-play skills in Black Rocket’s new eSports App, learn how to produce commentary for live tournaments, use professional streaming software, and most importantly practice online safety. Students will gain full access to the eSports App and a video of their class tournament with commentary. 

JUL 22-26 M–F Afternoons WDCC: Register Now

Make Your First Video Game!      Fee: $185 

If you love playing video games, this is the camp for you! Make your first video game in this one-of-a-kind class that shows you the keys to designing your first 2D platformer game. Conceptualization, play experience, level design, graphics, sounds, and simple coding are just some of the concepts that we’ll explore. 

JUL 15-19 M–F Mornings WDCC: Register Now

Minecraft© Designers      Fee: $185 

If you love the game Minecraft, and always wanted to design your own world, this class is for you! Learn how to create a custom map, the basics of creating 3D models using a new software to design your very own objects, how to build with Redstone and Command blocks, and create custom textures for you to import at home or share with friends. 

JUL 29-AUG 2 M–F Afternoons WDCC: Register Now 

Minecraft© Modders      Fee: $185 

Use your favorite game to learn the basics of modding and foundations of programming. Learn scripting and logic statements as you create your first mods! Introductory coding will also be taught through a simulated environment inspired by Minecraft. 

JUL 29-AUG 2 M–F Mornings WDCC: Register Now

ROBLOX® Makers-Coders-Entrepreneurs!      Fee: $185 

Discover how to code in the Lua language while playing and designing worlds in ROBLOX® , an online universe where you can create anything you dream of. This new class combines game design concepts, coding, and fun! Young entrepreneurs will also learn how to navigate Roblox’s fast growing marketplace to publish their games. 

JUL 15-19 M–F Afternoons WDCC: Register Now

Governor Northam Announces Collaborative Effort to Transform Virginia Community College System

Governor Northam Announces Collaborative Effort to Transform Virginia Community College System

~Governor allocates $5 million investment of federal workforce funds to redesign career pathways to place skills training at forefront~

RICHMOND—Today, at an event held at J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College, Governor Ralph Northam announced a collaborative effort to transform workforce programs offered through the Virginia Community College System (VCCS). Currently, many programs intended to train students with applied skills require them to take general education courses before advancing to essential skills-based courses. To best prepare students with the skills needed for high-demand, well-paying jobs, VCCS will work to redesign career pathways so that skills training begins at the start of each program.

“Completion shouldn’t be the only measure of success at the community college level—it should also be defined by securing a good job,” said Governor Northam. “We can and should prepare students with high-demand skills the moment they enter the community college system, and ensure that they have a foundation that will yield success at several points over the course of the program, including if they leave with a job before completion.”

Governor Northam has allocated $5 million of federal workforce discretionary funds to support the redesign of Virginia’s community college system. Each college will compete for funds used to rethink how they will do business and support students as well as current and future companies. Each college will receive a minimum of $100,000 and a maximum of $500,000. Businesses will endorse each pathway to ensure curricula align to twenty-first century needs.

“This thoughtful transformation of the VCCS will benefit Virginians throughout the entire Commonwealth,” said Chief Workforce Development Advisor to the Governor Megan Healy. “A recent study revealed that 650,000 people are currently out of work in Virginia. We are proud and excited that this initiative will allow this significant population, along with those who seek more gainful employment, an opportunity to pursue pathways to well-paying and in-demand jobs within their local communities.”

“Virginia’s community college system has always offered an abundance of programs that can help students learn new skills and continue their education,” said Secretary of Education Atif Qarni. “Moving in this new direction will be transformational for job-seeking students and employers across Virginia as it seeks to improve how the system prepares and trains the workforce of the present and future.”

“What we’re announcing today will enhance our traditional applied programs, making them attractive to those seeking to stack earned credentials and further their careers,” said Glenn DuBois, Chancellor of the Virginia Community College System.

# # #

Ofirah Yheskel
Office of Governor Ralph Northam
Ofirah.Yheskel@governor.virginia.gov


Content credit: Office of the Governor.
Photo: Governor Northam with Reynolds Community College Nursing students.

CCWA Selected as Partner of the Year by The Virginia Manufacturers Association

CCWA Selected as Partner of the Year by The Virginia Manufacturers Association

~ Two-time award winner honored for training practices~

Williamsburg (VA) At the recent Workforce Solutions Symposium at Kingsmill Resort, the Virginia Manufacturers Association (VMA) announced the Community College Workforce Alliance (CCWA) as “2018 Partner of the Year.” Honored with this award for the second time (the first award presented in 2015), CCWA, the workforce development partnership between John Tyler and Reynolds community colleges, continues to enhance its manufacturing technician training and apprenticeship programs – providing a pipeline of qualified applicants for the industry’s employers in the Greater Richmond region. Virginia’s major manufacturing companies, along with regional workforce and economic development partners, attended the event earlier this month.

“CCWA recognized early the need for a pipeline of qualified job seekers and employees to decrease the skills gap in manufacturing workforce,” said Dr. Victor Gray, Executive Director of Manufacturing Skills Institute (MSi). “Since 2015, CCWA and the Virginia Manufacturers Association have worked together to incorporate the Manufacturing Technician Level 1 (MT1) certification training into the community college education system. Each year, CCWA trains hundreds of Virginians for the MT1 certification, and they were the first organization in the Commonwealth to incorporate this certification within registered apprenticeship programs.” Gray added, “This year, working with Virginia Department of Veterans Services, CCWA launched a pilot ‘Military to Manufacturing’ program, which provides transitioning service members and veterans with free MT1 certification training, on-site industrial tours, and job interviews. To date, CCWA has certified more workers and job seekers in the MT1 certification than any other workforce agency in the country, and CCWA continues to develop new employer partnerships every day.”

In a recent study released by Deloitte, data shows the United States facing a massive labor shortage for technical jobs. Over the next decade, Deloitte points out that 2.4 million jobs could remain unfilled as a result of baby boomer generation retirements. The issue could cost the U.S. over $2 trillion in missed opportunities for the economy.

“CCWA is striving to make a dent in the skills gap and labor shortage,” said Dana Newcomer, CCWA’s Apprenticeship Coordinator. “Integrating industry recognized credentials and apprenticeships into the workplace is a primary tactic we’re focusing on as an educational partner. It’s imperative we develop our younger generations to not only become interested in these promising careers, but also competent.”

According to the VMA, winning the award twice within a four-year period demonstrates CCWA’s commitment to provide vital career pipeline services and credentialing initiatives to the region.


In the Photo:
Nat Marshall and Whitney Harrison are the Workforce Solutions Committee Co-Chairs
Dr. Victor Gray, Executive Director Workforce Solution
Wes Smith, CCWA Interim AVP of Workforce Development

Mission Tomorrow 2018: CCWA’s Interactive Exhibit

Mission Tomorrow 2018: CCWA’s Interactive Exhibit

Manufacturers will continue to actively recruit qualified employees in the Greater Richmond region; and, introducing thousands of eighth graders to the industry expands CCWA’s commitment to create a pipeline for these in-demand jobs.

In its third year, ChamberRVA’s Mission Tomorrow event (October 18 & 19) gave students the opportunity to meet with more than 100 businesses as they consider their higher education and career options. CCWA delivered information about training for careers in manufacturing and hands-on demonstrations that enhance the experience of working with equipment, tools and technologies.