WIOA Summit 2021

9:15 AM-9:30 AM: Welcome – The Value of The Workforce System

  • Presented by: John Rico

9:30 AM-10:45 AM: Keynote address – What is Possible through Partnership

  • Presented by Michael Karl

11:00 AM-12:00 PM: Breakout Sessions

  • An Example of Successful Core Partner Staff Training
    • Presented by: Julie Courtney – McHenry County Workforce Network
    • Training for One-Stop Center staff is often targeted to the job-seeking customer serving staff. Business Service staff do not usually participate in professional development training to assist them in improving service to business customers.  The WPMC recognized this and explored training opportunities for their Business Services staff. A Business Engagement Certification that could be offered across all 7 LWIAs and to all Core Partner Business Service Staff was implemented. The training was scheduled weekly and offered in a live webinar format.  The training required staff to not only participate in the webinars but to perform “homework” activities and a capstone project to ensure that the information was being incorporated into their daily work.  This presentation will provide an overview of the training activities and a discussion from participants of the training on the benefits they acquired immediately because of their participation in the training.
    • Presentation
  • Developing and Sustaining a Regional Business Service Team 
    • Presented by: Susan Flessner – Workforce Services Division of Will County
    • Regional service integration is a goal that all LWIAs strive for, however, the actual implementation of integrating services regionally takes planning, process development, partner participation, and strong facilitation.  This presentation will provide not only the overview of a successful Regional Business Services Team but the steps that were taken to get the team working, pitfalls encountered along the way, and samples of agendas and plans for regional teams.  A panel of members of the Northeast Economic Development Region will present information on their experiences over the last 2 years.
    • Presentation
  • Utilizing TPM Strategies to Leverage Industry Sectors for Youth Employment and Mobility
    • Presented by: Lazaro Lopez – High School District 214 and Illinois Community College Board
    • Strategies outlined in Talent Pipeline Management can be leveraged by education programs to increase employer engagement, add scale to existing collaborations, and organize in-demand industry sectors with innovative CTE programs focused on career pathways with economic mobility. High School District 214 Career Pathways and Youth Apprenticeship Models in manufacturing, health care, and cybersecurity will be shared.
    • Presentation
  • Ability to Benefit – Illinois’ Proposed State-Defined Process
    • An initiative that the Illinois Community College Board started this year is writing a State-Defined Process for the Ability to Benefit opportunity.  We have worked in conjunction with stakeholders across Illinois to build a document that will serve as guidance and a tool needed to tap into Ability to Benefit.  Please review the attached resources to learn about our potential plan and what the U.S. Department of Education requires in a plan of this nature.  Once the plan is complete, public review with being encouraged with a Public Comment Period planned for June and July.  We want to ensure this plan is functional for both institutions and students.
    • Ability to Benefit- Illinois Proposed State- Defined Process 
    • Developing a State Defined Process from CLASP 
  • Creatively Engaging the Community 
    • Presented by: Courtney Geiger – The Workforce Connection
    • COVID-19 has been disruptive for everyone, however, the need for services has only increased. In this workshop, The Workforce Connection One-Stop Operator will discuss how they have been able to creatively adapt and innovate to engage with community partners and individuals. We will share innovative service delivery methods as well as how to assess your agency, community, and partnerships to implement strategies that can work in your area
    • Presentation
  • Managing Your Mental Wellness During the Pandemic
    • Presented by: Tamara Fields – Crystal Clear Behavioral Health Services
    • This presentation will challenge audience members to explore the importance of managing their mental wellness during the pandemic. Statistics have shown an increase in mental health issues since this pandemic. Individuals will learn to recognize the impact the pandemic has on their mental and emotional well-being. Individuals will learn tips and tools to implement to maintain mental stability. Individuals will understand the importance of identifying and seeking professional services when warranted. Self-care strategies will be provided to combat social and physical isolation.
    • Presentation
  • LWIA Performance Goals and the Statistical Adjustment Model On-Demand Session
    • Presented by: Brian Richard – Center for Governmental Studies, Northern Illinois University
    • The statistical adjustment model (SAM) is used to adjust program performance goals for each LWIA based on the conditions in the LWIA during the program year being evaluated. The SAM measures how differences in demographic and economic factors across states or local areas affect training program success across several key metrics. For example, it shows whether an LWIA is likely to have more difficulty helping program participants find employment if more of the local employment base is concentrated in retail trade, or if the region has a higher unemployment rate. This session will provide an overview of how the SAM is constructed and how it will be used in determining whether performance goals are met.
    • Presentation

1:15 PM – 2:15 PM: Breakout Session Two –

  • Promoting Co-Enrollment through Communications
    • Presented by: Becky Raymond & Robert Guzman – Chicago Citywide Literacy Coalition
    • In October 2020, the Chicago Citywide Literacy Coalition (CCLC) became the One-Stop Operator for the 10 American Job Centers across Cook County. In this session, you will learn how CCLC’s One-Stop Operator team is using survey responses from more than 150 front-line staff members and input gathered from focus groups of dozens of stakeholders to improve communication and to coordinate processes.  Based on this input, CCLC is designing techniques for engaging partners across titles to promote service integration, communication, access, and referrals.  The ultimate goal is facilitating strategic co-enrollment. Join us for an interactive session that lays out how to use communication and technology to better serve program participants.
    • Presentation
  • Being Intentional About Equity & Inclusion 
    • Presented by: Lisa Bly-Jones – The Workforce Connection
    • We want a workforce system that’s inclusive and supports an equitable economy for all.  Our work is the people component of economic development. In order for our economy to thrive, we must invest in people and the potential they possess.  The goal of the workshop is to bring awareness to how our thoughts, feelings, and actions impact the populations we serve.  This interactive workshop will provoke thoughtful introspection about program designs and policies that are developed with unintentional consequences to those we want to serve.  When we know better, we can do better.
    • Presentation
  • Connecting DHS Customers to Career Services
    • Presented by: Elliot Esparza – National Able IT Career Lab
    • In 2016, the Job Center of Lake County (LWIA 1) set out to intentionally connect customers of the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) with the free services of the Job Center and WIOA training through several regular events. A DHS Case manager met with customers on a weekly basis at the Job Center to familiarize these customers with job services.  The Job Center also hosted half-day events for TANF customers where they could develop a resume, meet with employers and apply for WIOA training.  Additionally, Lake County was the pilot county in Illinois for the training program known as “SNAP to Success”.  After an initial trial run, this was expanded to other counties.  National Able’s IT Career Lab helps SNAP participants receive cutting-edge training to prepare them for careers in the field of information technology.  Hear how this program has helped customers achieve self-sufficiency.
    • Presentation
  • Employer – Led Talent Supply Chain Solutions On-Demand
    • Presented by: Jaimie Francis – U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation
    • Talent Pipeline Management (TPM) builds the capacity of the business community to better manage career pathway partnerships so that learners and workers will have better employment opportunities. In this new system, employers proactively organize and manage their preferred talent providers to orchestrate performance-based talent supply chain solutions that streamline career pathways for newly credentialed individuals and existing workers. Learn from the U. S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and a panel of experts who successfully established TPM in their diverse communities how the TPM framework can add value to your talent efforts.
    • Presentation
    • Handout
  • Broadband READY – Cross-Sector Collaboration for a Competitive 21st Century Digital Economy and Workforce
    • Presented by: Matt Schmit – Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity & Jeannette Tamayo – Illinois Innovation Network
    • A collaborative effort between the Illinois Office of Broadband and the Illinois Innovation Network, the Broadband Regional Engagement for Adoption + Digital Equity (READY) program provides grant funding, best-practice consultation, and expert facilitation to explore opportunities for equitable advances in the areas of broadband access, adoption, and utilization – all through the lens of digital equity. The program works with a cohort of qualified regional entities to establish baseline metrics, identify digital equity gaps, and create an action plan for eliminating the digital divide. The program is designed to engage regionally diverse “Broadband READY teams” to understand the context and contour of local “digital equity” ecosystems through regional collaboration among community and economic development organizations, educators, local leaders, and other related stakeholders, and it seeks to provide scalable solutions for broadband utilization across all 10 Illinois economic development regions – including pressing current needs such as telehealth and remote learning.
    • Presentation
  • Creating Regional Sector Partnerships On-Demand
    • Presented by Michael Baker – DCEO
    • The sector strategies and sector partnership concepts are mentioned dozens of times in the WIOA statute and program regulations. What can we do to address this disconnect between intent and reality and support the creation and sustainability of these important public / private coalitions? Key topics covered in this session include: How do sector partnerships add value to a community, businesses, and workforce? Defining true sector partnerships. How to form and sustain sector partnerships. The role of the workforce & education systems in a sector partnership. And how are other states using sector partnerships?
    • Presentation
  • Doing things Differently During Covid-19 
    • Presented by: Charles Townsend – Employment & Employer Services
    • This presentation will highlight how E&ES WIOA Services have pivoted from an in-person to a virtual approach. The presenters will address our accomplishments with customers as well as discuss pitfalls we have experienced in the virtual environment.
    • Presentation

3:00 PM – 4:30 PM – Closing Session: State Program Director Panel State of the State Programs

  • Panelists
    • Jennifer Foster – ICCB
    • Julio Rodriguez – DCEO
    • Carrie Thomas – IDES
    • Rahnee Patrick – DHS

Wednesday, April 28, 2021 – Workshops

9:00 AM – 11:00 AM: Workshop Session One

  • Introduction to workNet Front Line Training
    • Presented by Natasha Telger – Center for Workforce Development
    • Over the past 15 years, we have worked with local and statewide partners to provide tools related to intake, assessment, services delivery, outcomes, and reports that can be used by cross-functional teams/organizations.  We have successfully developed tools and training resources for a statewide project such as EPIC, Community Youth Employment Program, Youth Career Pathways, and we are currently working on Apprenticeship Illinois. Illinois workNet developed the Customer Support Center based on the best practices and lessons learned from implementing special projects. These tools and best practices are now available to all partners so they can have a common set of tools and online space where they can work together to assist customers.
    • Presentation
  • Working Remotely – Implications for Workforce Development
    • Presented by: Peter Creticos – Institute for Work & the Economy
    • The pandemic precipitated a grand experiment in new modes of work. Gig workers and freelancers – many relying on electronic platforms – preceded the pandemic as online workers. Beginning March 2020, many regular, full-time jobs shifted to people’s homes. Although many jobs will return to offices, it is clear that remote work is now normalized and embraced by businesses. What are the evolving office arrangements? What skills will workers need to succeed in a rapidly changing environment? What are the implications for employers, human resources officers, and job supervisors? Also, the shift towards more remote and gig work will weaken the geographic boundaries of traditional labor markets. People from across the globe may compete for jobs that were once tied spatially to an employer’s place of business. What are the potential implications for the workforce system and training providers as jobs become more globalized?

1:00 PM – 3:00 PM/4:00 PM: Workshop Session Two

  • Keeping Youth Engaged in a Pandemic World – The Impact of Anxiety and How to Overcome It 
    • Presented by Zach Gibson – Zach Gibson, LCPC
    • In a year of pandemic uncertainty, youth & young adults experience anxiety at an ever-increasing rate. In this workshop, we will explore how to better understand and support young people as they navigate the ongoing pressures of education and employment despite ever-changing mental health needs. Participants can hope to gain a foundational understanding of anxiety, explore varying symptom presentations of anxiety in young people, and master skills for improving support of young people across educational and vocational settings.
    • Presentation
  • Using Customer-Centered Design to Improve the Customer’s Experience 
    • Presented by Jodie Sue Kelly – Cygnet Associates
    • A key skill that helps us to create successful relationships with our customers is being able to look at our systems from the perspective of our customers. By understanding someone else’s viewpoint, we find what they need and want from us, how they are doing with our services, and as a result, how we can build a better experience. This session will cover how to build a customer journey map for your customers, how to identify and solve “pain points”, and how to learn from your customer’s view of how to build a better program.
    • Presentation
    • Worksheet
  • Chicagoland Career Pathways – Expanding postsecondary access through system-wide collaboration 
    • Presented by: January Miller – Chicagoland CareerPathways
    • In 2019, Chicago Public Schools graduates saw both four-year degree enrollment and completion rates below 50%. What about the three-quarters of high school graduates for whom college isn’t right, right now? Chicagoland CareerPathways (CareerPathways.net) offers a path to a rewarding career without, before, or in addition to a four-year degree through our 100% free directory of employment training programs, all of which require an associate degree or less. Launched in January 2020, CareerPathways’s story is one of adaptability, collaboration, and innovation. By leaning into and drawing from an interconnected ecosystem of the workforce, education, and community partners, CareerPathways has served over 6,500 users in the Chicagoland area. It has become a tool for data collection, program expansion, and closing the access and information gaps between Chicagoland’s workforce and robust training opportunities. Though currently one-of-a-kind, CareerPathways may serve as a model for other regions who seek to do the same.
    • Presentation
  • Worker Rights Session
    • Presented by Alison Dickson – The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign School of Labor and Employment Relations
    • This webinar will provide a comprehensive overview of the legal rights non-union workers have on the job in Illinois as well as strategies for protection and enforcement of rights. This training will build upon the 90 min introductory webinar and discuss unique challenges and opportunities for improving working conditions for low-wage workers in Illinois. Participants will be provided with a link to a Google folder containing additional information and resources and will have the opportunity to ask questions in the
      chatbox. A live recording will be made available to others after the webinar date.
    • Presentation
    • Resources