The City of Bristol is joining Bristol Adult Education and local manufacturers to launch BristolWORKS!, an innovative workforce development program that will transform careers, directly address the difficult retail employment landscape, and assist Bristol manufacturers and major employers with filling job vacancies.
BristolWORKS!, offered by Bristol Adult Education, is a free, 10-week training program for local residents who are underemployed and in search of stable careers with growth potential in the manufacturing industry. BristolWORKS! will offer up to 20 individuals free manufacturing training and is ideal for those stuck in unstable jobs who face low wages, inconvenient work hours, little room for professional growth, and the constant threat of being laid off as e-commerce and other factors force retailers to close their doors.
Importantly, BristolWORKS! will provide those enrolled in the program free childcare and transportation assistance while they learn – two of the most critical roadblocks many face when seeking career training, according to Lawrence Covino, Director of Bristol Adult Education.
“Many in Bristol know that training is out there and want something better for themselves and for their families,” Covino adds, “but they also may have young children at home or transportation issues that get in the way. We are taking care of those issues.”
“Across the country and here in Bristol we must watch as some of our favorite retailers shutter their stores and lay off dedicated employees as e-commerce takes over the retail industry,” notes Mayor Zoppo-Sassu.
“Rather than accept this as our fate, we are addressing the challenge headon by supporting our fellow citizens who want something more for their families but may feel trapped in a vulnerable industry.”
“As we meet with manufacturers throughout Bristol we consistently hear that filling job vacancies and planning for impending retirements is one of their largest concerns,” says Justin Malley, Executive Director of the Bristol Development Authority. “Many of our manufacturers are doing well, but they need more employees to fill the work orders.”
Bristol Adult Education is partnering with Rowley Spring to provide meaningful training for program participants. Rowley will provide experienced staff members as trainers for the program, allowing students to gain skills on the type of equipment found in manufacturing companies throughout the All Heart City.
“The Bristol area is among the nation’s biggest Spring and Stamping centers, with roots going back almost 200 years to when the 4 slide machine was invented in CT before the civil war. Today, we have hundreds of manufacturers and suppliers all competing over a dwindling pool of trades people. Programs like this are a great way to connect with people looking for more than just a job, but a great and long career in a manufacturing trade.” – John Dellalana, President
To learn more about this program and/or to register, contact Brian Reardon, Workforce Coordinator at the Bristol Adult Education Center: 860-584-7865, ext. 710106.