Rock Valley College

New Consortium to Operate The Workforce Connection One-Stop Centers

Posted: Monday, April 17, 2017

Media Contact: RVC Public Relations, 815-921-4510

Event Contact: John Strandin, (815) 395-6688

RVC, Goodwill and IDES to Partner at Rockford, Freeport and Belvidere Centers

The Workforce Connection Board has awarded a contract to a newly-formed consortium to operate workforce centers and offer career services in Boone, Stephenson and Winnebago Counties.

Rock Valley College, Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois and the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) will partner to provide workforce services in the three-county region starting July 1. RVC will serve as the lead agency to administer an estimated $1.8 million of federal funds under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

"As the local organization working to connect our people to the right employment opportunity and supporting employers needing a talented workforce, the role of the One Stop Operation is vital. It's particularly important for those persons with significant barriers to employment. After a very competitive process, I'm excited about this new partnership that will help us achieve our goals for both our citizens and the employers who need them to succeed,” said Rockford Mayor Larry Morrissey, a Chief Elected Official for the local workforce area.

“The workforce board issued a Request for Proposals and received four responses,” according to Karen Brown, chair of The Workforce Connection Board. “The proposal from the consortium of Rock Valley College, Goodwill and IDES was the strongest based on the number of points awarded by reviewers. The board is excited about the innovative and collaborative approach taken by these local organizations and is looking forward to working with this new consortium to connect skilled workers to available jobs,” she added.

“This new, collaborative approach with Goodwill and IDES will help us build our local workforce through targeted training to individuals who are seeking employment and needed support for local employers,” said Amanda Smith, Dean of Transitional Opportunities and Career Education at RVC. “An emphasis will be placed on aligning local talent with employer needs, ensuring that the training received is what is needed to support our region.”

The mission of the board of The Workforce Connection is to create a competitive, skilled and educated workforce by providing a system for individuals to gain meaningful employment responsive to the needs of business.

The Workforce Connection is a partnership of state and federally funded employment and training programs and educational entities committed to providing a workforce that meets the needs of our business community.

The Workforce Connection Centers are located at 303 North Main Street in Rockford, 998 Belvidere Road in Belvidere and 27 West Stephenson Street in Freeport.