For Immediate Release - December 06, 2010

Patrick-Murray Administration Highlights $161,000 Workforce Training Grant For Employment Options in Marlborough

Patrick-Murray Administration Recently Announced $1.2 million in Federal Stimulus Awards to 8 Workforce Training Partnership Programs in Massachusetts

Boston, MA - Monday, December 13, 2010- Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Joanne F. Goldstein today visited Employment Options in Marlborough to highlight a $161,000 grant to train individuals to be Certified Peer Specialists. This visit follows the Patrick-Murray Administration's recent announcement of a $1.2 million federal stimulus award to eight workforce training partnership programs across the Commonwealth.

Employment Options is among eight programs in the state that has partnered with educational institutions to provide practical application for classroom learning, and to ensure that participants are able to master the skills they need to compete in today's workforce.

"The human services sector continues to be an industry to look towards for job opportunities," said Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development Joanne F. Goldstein. "The work that will be done here will have a positive and long-term impact on the program participants, the customers they will serve and local employers."

"This program has a strong track-record in developing, hiring and advocating for individuals recovering from psychiatric conditions," said Nancy Snyder, President and CEO of Commonwealth Corporation. "Once certified, these individuals will be vital in assisting their peers to identify and achieve specific life objectives."

Employment Options is partnered with numerous employers across the Commonwealth committed to educating, developing and hiring Certified Peer Specialist (CPS) candidates. A CPS is a salaried staff person with a previous psychological disability who is trained and certified to assist their peers in achieving specific goals. After finishing the demanding curriculum and passing the certification exam, CPS graduates work alongside clinicians and other personnel to provide high quality services to clients.

Employment Options seeks to create a home-away-from-home where people can overcome barriers to employment and cultivate self-sufficiency and personal growth.

The following programs also received ARRA funding:

• Community Workshops Inc./d.b.a. Community Work Services in Boston was awarded over $162,000 to train and place homeless individuals and those at risk for homelessness in hospitality occupations.

• South Shore Community Action Council Inc. in Plymouth was awarded over $163,000 to provide permit preparation and CDL driver training courses to place individuals in Class B CDL licensed jobs in a cross section of industries.

• Jewish Healthcare Center in Worcester was awarded over $166,000 to train incumbent and unemployed Licensed Practical Nurses and Certified Nursing Assistants for 16 long-term care facilities.

• Minuteman Career and Technical High School in Lexington was awarded over $141,000 to expand the Minuteman Adult Biomanufacturing Certificate Program to a daytime program that will train participants for entry level technician positions.

• Boston Carpenters Apprenticeship & Training Fund in Dorchester was awarded over $166,000 to train long-term unemployed carpenters in need of updated training leading to new Drywall certification to enhance their competitiveness for available jobs.

• Baystate Medical Center in Springfield was awarded over $167,000 to train and place incumbent workers and unemployed community residents in Patient Care Technician positions using the new employer-developed Acute Care Certified Nurse Assistant curriculum.

• St. Mary's Women and Children's Center in Dorchester was awarded over $135,000 in funding and partners with UMass-Boston, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and the Corcoran Management Company to provide career training to disadvantaged women in the region.