James Otterstein, Economic Development Manager with Rock County, in partnership with the Milton Area Chamber of Commerce (MACC) and the School District of Milton will be hosting a briefing on Inspire Rock County. Please plan to come to this briefing to learn how your business can get involved to connect you to the future workforce in our community. Information is available below to learn more about Inspire Rock County.
WHAT'S THE INSPIRE ROCK COUNTY PROJECT ABOUT?
The Inspire Project is a career or occupational development and related engagement strategy, utilizing an e-Harmony relationship approach. Specifically, this strategy involves an integrated online system that provides a direct linkage between employers and (future) employees. By developing and subsequently incorporating Academic & Career Plans (ACP) into a school district's curriculum, students and businesses will have an approved communication / information sharing platform. This platform, which uses elements of contemporary social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, serves as a bridge to connect students with demand-driven, career readiness preparation and skills. When enhanced through specific web-based applications (i.e. Career Cruising), these ACP's provide a gateway to increase the frequency and related depth of exposure to careers that exist within the local or regional labor markets. Further, this web-based interaction can efficiently facilitate apprenticeships, mentoring, company tours, job shadowing, work-based learning and a host of exchanges too.
WHO IS USING THIS APPROACH?
To date, there are over 20,000 licensed public/private sector sites (in some shape or form) nationwide. There are up to five states that have elected to deploy this approach on a statewide basis and countless regions are adopting it too. In WI, there are approximately 10 school districts that have moved toward this pathway and a handful of counties are considering launching it countywide. Racine County, for example, is actively ramping-up its implementation activities - as over 70 private sector companies have already made engagement commitments. Following Racine's lead, Rock County will be the next WI county to fully adopt this approach.
WHO ELSE HAS BEEN BRIEFED?
During the last four months, there have been various briefings held throughout Rock County. Some of these gatherings have been large venues, while others have been along the lines of one-on-one presentations. Overall, there has been solid countywide interest and participation support.
WHAT'S THE COST?
There are two main costs: (1) license / fees and (2) participant sweat equity. In terms of the license / fees, there's a flat (discounted) rate charged to the participating K-16 educational institutions. Per the WI Dept. of Public Instruction, school districts are permitted to apply existing Federal Carl Perkins funding toward this career exploration and development service. For the business community, there is NO COST to participate. Rock County 5.0 and the SW Workforce Development Board are supporting the Project for the first two years, with the anticipation that state funding will eventually cover most or all of these costs moving forward. That said, there is a sweat equity responsibility that falls back on all participants. However, as an "early adopter" our Inspire Team can reduce this initial sweat equity by pre-loading the Company Profile. Air Products and American Awards & Promotions have agreed to be 'early adopters' in the Milton area thus far.
Please RSVP your attendance to the MACC office at 868-6222 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.