Focus on providing opportunities for jobseekers and meeting talent demands of Metro-Detroit employers
DETROIT, November 14, 2016 – City of Detroit workforce agency Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC) announced Monday that it has hired Nicole Sherard-Freeman to serve as its new President and Chief Executive Officer.
The announcement, which concluded an exhaustive nationwide recruitment process that attracted over 300 candidates, will see Ms. Sherard-Freeman take over in her new role by January 2017.
“The process of finding a new CEO is a matter not just of finding the right qualifications and experience, but also the right fit,” said Calvin Sharp, former EVP Human Resources for Penske Automotive Group and DESC Board member, who led the search on behalf of DESC. “Nicole is a proven leader with vast experience in the workforce space. Her expertise in strategy, policy, and leadership development set her apart in a national pool of candidates. We are delighted to have her lead the efforts to prepare Detroiters for opportunities and connect them to jobs.”
In her new role, Ms. Sherard-Freeman will focus on building a Detroit talent pipeline that can support the workforce demands of an increasing number of Detroit employers across a wide range of sectors.
“We are experiencing a level of employment growth opportunity that we have not seen for many years,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, one of several key stakeholders with whom Ms. Sherard-Freeman met during the interview process. “It is critical that Detroiters are given the opportunity and the tools to be a part of this revitalization. We can only build Detroit by building Detroiters.”
Ms. Sherard-Freeman joins DESC from the Corporation for a Skilled Workforce in Ann Arbor, where she was the Director of CSW’s Detroit Portfolio. A native Detroiter, Sherard-Freeman led the on-the-ground research team for and co-authored the CSW Workforce System mapping report.
For the past two years, she has worked directly with community and faith-based organizations, non-profits, government partners, and philanthropic investors in Detroit. Her work has been instrumental in helping to understand how to connect thousands of adults and youths to jobs, career paths, and skill development opportunities. She also brings more than 25 years of experience in other HR, sales, account management, operations, and senior leadership roles from the corporate sector.
“There couldn’t be a better time to join DESC,” said Ms. Sherard-Freeman. “Over the past year, the organization has started to build stronger, more comprehensive partnerships to help connect Detroiters to jobs. We need to accelerate this collaboration, and improve our operational excellence to be able to connect Detroiters with emerging opportunities in the city. As a system, we owe Detroit job-seekers and employers stronger, faster, and smarter orchestration of the services we provide.”
Ms. Sherard-Freeman will take over from Interim President and CEO Jose Reyes, who has been leading the agency since April.
One of the fastest growing sectors in Detroit, in both number of jobs and career potential, is the IT sector. Thousands of jobs are available, including software developers, database administrators and system analysts.
The City of Detroit’s TechHire program is designed to support Detroiters interested in entering the field by connecting them with training programs and available job opportunities. The program started in fall 2016 with an ‘Accelerator’ program, designed to help interested jobseekers to develop a platform of skills and competencies that will allow them to access further, more detailed training. Further training will begin in January 2017.
If you are interested in finding out more about TechHire, then visit our of Detroit Employment Solutions One-Stop Service Centers to register. Applicants interested in the first wave of training must visit their local One-Stop to register for consideration by October 13, 2016.
The program is open to City of Detroit residents, age 18+. Other eligibility restrictions apply. Please ask at the One-Stop for details.
Participants gain the skills necessary to work in environmental construction and are matched with employers for interviews at the end of an 11-week course.
The 79 graduates will be presented with certificates in various environmental construction and deconstruction classifications, some of which include work readiness, CPR, reducing asbestos and lead, and hazardous site protection, the city announced Thursday.
City officials say some previous graduates went from $9-per-hour jobs to making $21 an hour after completing the course.
Many also received employment opportunities from construction companies in the Metro Detroit area.
The ceremony will be on Friday at 9 a.m. at the Northwest Activities Center, located at 18100 Meyers Road.
The training course is funded with grants through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It is offered through Detroit’s Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department and the Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation.
City seeks training partners to provide work readiness skills for growing number of available skilled trades jobs
DETROIT – As the number of major construction projects in Detroit continues to grow, the City is preparing to launch a new program designed to train Detroiters for careers in construction and skilled trades.
The initiative will train Detroiters in the fundamental, math, reading and work readiness skills connected to jobs in the construction industry. The program is being developed and recruited by Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC), the City of Detroit’s workforce agency.
DESC has released a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking two training partners to run the program, which will include literacy and numeracy improvements, skilled trades career exploration and work readiness skills and supports. Classes will last 4-6 weeks and will begin this fall.
“Detroit is experiencing a real construction boom that is bringing with it a lot of well-paying jobs,” said Mayor Duggan. “The goal of this program is to help make sure city residents have the skills they need to fill these jobs so we can have a turnaround that includes Detroiters rebuilding Detroit.”
Graduates of the program, which is expected to launch later this fall, will have the skills necessary to immediately transition into a job or apprenticeship.
“Building a pipeline of Detroiters ready for careers in the construction industry is a huge priority for us,” said City of Detroit Workforce Development Director Jeff Donofrio. “This new program will help Detroiters find immediate employment on projects in our city or go on to enter into a construction certificate or skilled trades apprenticeship program.”
The RFP process calls for bids to be received at DESC’s downtown offices by 3:00 p.m. local time September 23, with announcement of awards in early October. Training is anticipated to start in November and will complete before the end of 2016.
Organizations interested in responding to the RFP should visit DESC’s ‘Work with Us‘ page..Individuals interested in participating in the training should call 1-800-285-WORKS or click here for the location of their nearest DESC One-Stop Service Center.
Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC) is one of 11 organizations nationwide to benefit from a $21 million grant from the White House Summer Opportunity Project, focused on providing work opportunities for youth.
In Detroit, the $2 million in funding over two years will allow DESC to provide career development activities to 1,000 youth as part of the Mayor’s ‘Grow Detroit’s Young Talent’ (GDYT) program.
“Access to a job in the summer and beyond can make all the difference to a young person – especially those who don’t have access to many resources and opportunities,” said President Barack Obama as he announced the award.
The White House’s Summer Opportunity Project hopes that participation in a jobs program will lead to a reduction in the amount of youth-related crime over the summer months, in addition to helping prepare youth with real life work experiences they will need to attain a job in the future.
“This grant will let us bring more employment opportunities and training to young Detroiters,” said Jose Reyes, interim president and CEO of DESC. “We appreciate that the Obama administration sees the difference that we are making in Detroit and is helping us to expand our efforts.”
Mayor Mike Duggan’s GDYT program has received over 11,000 applications for the 8,000 available placements, and the number of businesses involved has more than doubled since last year. Employers have the option to hire youth directly, sponsor a youth experience or split the cost fifty-fifty with GDYT. The program also includes 12 hours of pre-work readiness training and 24 hours of ongoing training, which includes financial literacy.
DESC supports the GDYT program and is committed to aiding its growth. “We must adapt to fit the needs of prospective employers and employees,” said Stephanie Nixon, DESC director of programs and service innovation.
DESC will be creating a smartphone app to display program opportunities and support services. In addition, they will begin the use of digital badges to act as online certification to verify previous experiences and skillsets.
“The summer-only program will now be year-round thanks to the White House Youth grant,” said Nixon.
For more information about the GDYT program, please visit gdyt.org. Visit the White House website for more information about the White House Summer Opportunity Project.
The draft Region 10 Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) plan for July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2020 is available for review.
Region 10 is comprised of Oakland, Wayne and Macomb counties and includes 4 Michigan Works Agencies:
Oakland County Michigan Works
Macomb/St. Clair Michigan Works
Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation
This draft document is offered for public comment. Comments should be addressed to Melissa Sheldon and be sent by email to email@example.com or by mail to Southeast Michigan Community Alliance, 25363 Eureka Road, Taylor, MI 48180.
Any comments specifically relating to the local plan should be sent by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent by regular mail to Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation, Policy Planning and Resource Development Unit, Attn: Robert Shimkoski, 440 East Congress – Suite 400, Detroit, Michigan 48226. Mail should be received no later than 5.00pm EST July 8, 2016.
Wayne County Executive Warren C. Evans’ Administration announced today a $700,000 grant, secured from the Michigan Child Care Fund, to boost the Grow Detroit’s Young Talent program.
The grant will fund summer jobs for as many as 1,000 Detroit youth, ages 14-17, who receive assistance through Wayne County’s juvenile prevention services. This effort will enable at-risk youth to gain employment, build positive relationships with adult mentors and supportive peers, and empower them to make value-based life choices.
Participants will be placed with employers through Grow Detroit’s Young Talent, a six-week summer youth employment program established by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan that aims to provide 8,000 Detroit youth this year with work readiness training and on-the-job experience.
”These funds directly support the youth in our community who stand to benefit significantly from the training and career exploration provided by Grow Detroit’s Young Talent,” said Deputy Wayne County Executive Richard Kaufman. “When we provide resources like this, we clear a path for these youth to take an important step in the right direction. This investment will pay it forward for future generations and as a result, our communities become stronger.”
Wayne County’s Department of Health, Veterans and Community Wellness leveraged its relationship with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to secure the County’s $700,000 contribution from the Child Care Fund. In addition, the Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation (DESC) raised the necessary $700,000 match from the philanthropic community to bring the total contribution to $1.4 million. This is but another example of Detroit and Wayne County working together to improve our community.
Grow Detroit’s Young Talent’s mission to provide youth with work-readiness training and on-the-job experiences are aligned with a priority of the Evans Administration to provide youth, in particular those who are at-risk, with workforce opportunities.
“We are excited to work with Wayne County on bringing more life-changing opportunities and work experiences to young people in our city,” Mayor Duggan said. “This is about giving young people the life and work skills that will put them on the path to bright futures and careers.
“Summer jobs are such an important part of a young person’s life, and we need to make sure that as many young people in Detroit as possible have the same opportunity.”
News of the partnership with Wayne County comes on the heels of the Grow Detroit’s Young Talent program receiving a $2 million federal grant awarded over two years.
Last year, the City of Detroit provided jobs to 5,600 youths in the city, so this year, Mayor Duggan set the goal of expanding it to 8,000. More than 11,000 youth ages 14-24 from across the city of Detroit applied for GDYT in five weeks this year, and more than 200 employers have signed on to participate so far, nearly twice the number last year. Businesses can still join by registering at www.gdyt.org by May 30.
The youth start work July 6. Teens 14 to 18 years of age are paid $8 an hour, and those 18-24 receive $9.50 an hour. Most participants work 20 hours a week for six weeks. They will also receive 12 hours of work readiness training and another 24 hours of training, such as financial literacy education.
Wayne County has partnered with 23 youth service agencies to nominate and screen youth who are eligible to participate in the program. The youth selected will undergo an assessment to ensure that they meet the eligibility criteria and that they have a genuine interest in achieving success in the program. United Way of Southeastern Michigan will administer the contribution, and work with DESC and the youth service agencies to place youth with employers.
This collaboration builds upon the Evans Administration’s ongoing commitment to help transform the lives of at-risk youth. Earlier this year, Executive Evans announced a partnership with Detroit-based Black Family Development to provide job training for at-risk youth and those released from Wayne County’s Juvenile Detention facility. The program is slated to launch in late summer of 2016.
Get your record clean, and get into the job stream!
Is your criminal history preventing you from achieving your employment goals? Are you failing to get interviews because you are required to disclose a conviction? Do you want to work, but don’t know how to get started?
Then you’ll want to mark this date on your calendar: Saturday, June 4. That’s the day the City of Detroit and Detroit Employment Solutions are partnering to bring you the ‘Project Clean Slate’ fair.
Project Clean Slate is a City of Detroit initiative to help residents get their criminal records expunged to assist them in finding new careers. At the fair, resources will be available to help you:
Prepare an application for record expungement
Get connected with an attorney that can help you through the process
Find information about ex-offender jobs available
Find information about ‘Job Readiness’ programs and Workforce Development
The fair starts Saturday June 4 at 10am and best of all, these services are provided free of charge.
Interested? Then visit the City of Detroit’s website at www.detroitmi.gov/projectcleanslate to get more information about location, services available and eligibility. You can also pre-register to reduce the amount of time you’ll need to wait for someone to help you.
The White House National Economic Council, Department of Labor and Department of Commerce hosted an informal meeting January 20 with workforce leaders from around the U.S., all of whom were in town for the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
The group discussed progress being made in each region in implementing regional partnerships and sector strategies to better align training with in-demand jobs and get more people through those career pathways. In addition, the group discussed ways of working together to solidify progress over the coming year.
Attendees included (l to r) Robert Sainz (Los Angeles, CA), Keith Lawing (Witchita, KS), Paul Haynes (Nashville, TN), Pamela Moore (DESC), Marlena Sessions (Seattle, WA), Michael Gritton (Louisville, KY), Steve Partridge (Charlotte, NC), and Laurie Bouillion Larrea (Dallas, TX).