Category Archives: Newsletter

Career Center Reopening Plan Underway

CAWD is working with our partners on a plan to reopen NCWorks Career centers at Tillery Place in Raleigh and Clayton to the public soon. Staff returned to the centers on July 13th and are using established protocols for personal health and safety and preparing for the public’s return. New signage with safety information and instructions for customers while onsite have been installed in addition to sneeze guards at computer stations.

If all goes according to plan, the centers will reopen at reduced capacity in late July or early August.  Since NC Commerce is a major partner in center operations, the exact date for opening to the public will be influenced by guidance from the state. Career centers located in Wake County’s regional centers will reopen on the county’s schedule.

Emergency Funds for Youth Employment

The 3-month average rate of unemployment claims by individuals under the age of 25 was 18%. Many youth and young adults work in the hospitality industry which was hardest hit by Covid. CAWD applied to Wake County government for emergency funds that will help young people transition into jobs with better career potential. The funding will be used specifically for electrical  and information technology training, and apprenticeships.

Raleigh-Durham Joint Apprenticeship Task Committee (JATC) has a pre-apprenticeship program that introduces youth, women and people of color to the electrical profession. Training is a hybrid model with an online component alternated with in-person training to allow for social distancing. Students will also complete training hours with local employers. When complete, they will be considered for a Registered Apprenticeship with IBEW members that includes full-time pay and continued training.

ISG has developed ITAP (Information Technology Apprenticeship Program) to help young people gain entry-level knowledge in the IT field. This program is a gateway into IT and possibly Cyber Security careers for those with an interest and aptitude for the work. The curriculum covers foundational knowledge in IT and will include assistance with sought after certificates in CompTIA. Training will primarily be online to allow for at-home learning. Upon completion, participants will be prepared to continue their education in higher skilled areas such as a Cyber Security Apprenticeship or entry level IT employment.

IBM Selects CAWD for Project Re-Ignite

CAWD was one of 10 organizations in the nation selected by IBM as a partner for their Re-Ignite initiative. The goal of Re-Ignite is to minimize the impacts of the pandemic by speeding up the recovery of local workforces, communities and economies. We were selected because we have a firm grasp off the region’s workforce/economic development ecosystem and have an existing focus on vulnerable communities.

One element of Re-Ignite is SkillsBuild, a platform IBM created to equip job seekers with professional skills needed in a digital world. In addition to technical training, there are modules to acquaints users with new ways of working such as Agile and Design Thinking. It also introduces them to new technologies such as AI and Blockchain.  As a service to businesses, companies can receive individualized support to address key business challenges, opportunities and strategies for development of re-launch plans, and much more.

CAWD plans to incorporate IBM’s SkillsBuild platform into service offerings at the career centers for customers enrolled in WIOA programs, and those who are not. This partnership has the ability to produce a long-lasting impact on workers and businesses in the Triangle.

Housing for Reentry Clients

Without adequate housing, it is almost impossible for anyone to find and sustain employment. It’s especially hard for those leaving incarceration and have little outside support.

CAWD will use $100,900 from House Wake! for emergency and transition housing for reentry clients. Housing is the top need for 90% of men and women being served through our Roads to Reentry program and the Wake LRC.  A safe place to live is essential to a successful reentry. Since most newly released men and women have no money to pay rent, we are happy to have added funding to enhance our rentry programs.

Roads to Reentry has enrolled 54 individuals and the Wake LRC has served 49 since CAWD took over in February. Partners can refer reentry clients at

CAWD Launches “Reopen Wake” COVID-10 Training

Health and Safety Training Grant Helps Small Businesses Reopen Safely

Raleigh, NC, July 7, 2020Capital Area Workforce Development (CAWD) has launched Reopen Wake to support the reopening efforts of minority and women-owned businesses and businesses located in Wake County’s vulnerable communities.  Eligible businesses will be able to provide employees with health and safety training to minimize the spread of COVID-19 as employees return to work and operations resume.

“Small businesses often have insufficient financing and limited internal capacities which have been exacerbated by COVID-19. Business owners of color, women founders and other underrepresented minorities often have an even greater need. We’re glad to be able to provide this program to help businesses and their employees better prepare to operate safely in the current environment,” said Pat Sturdivant, Executive Director at CAWD.

This interactive online training addresses topics such as how to protect staff from workplace outbreaks, facilities setup and best practices for safely bringing employees back to work. Employees will also learn best practices for personal health and safety.

Funds for Reopen Wake were provided by Wake County Government.

More information including eligibility requirements and the application is available here.


New Additions!

While it was sad losing some of our long-time board members, we are thrilled to have several new members in addition to our newly elected executive committee.

CAWD’s new chair is Stephen Miller, HR Business Partner at Novo Nordisk Pharmaceutical Company. Vice chair is Brian Holland, General Counsel at Global Knowledge, and Tom White, Director of NC State University Economic Development Partnership is the new secretary. Each of them has served multiple years on the board and are well respected by the general membership. They will surely take CAWD to new heights!

Here’s a brief introduction to our new board members:

Monica Meadows is business development officer at BlueLine Aviation.  BlueLine offers multiple aviation training progams and is expanding their presence at Johnston Regional Airport. Monica is responsible for development and implementation of the organization’s growth strategy, and brings a wealth of experience in aviation and talent management.

Nicole Jarvis-Miller is vice president of talent acquisition, diversity, inclusion and culture at Advance Auto. The company moved its headquarters to Raleigh last year with an expected 435 new jobs. Nicole has 19 years of HR leadership experience and is currently responsible for more than 70,000 employees.

Michael Haley is the executive director of Wake County Economic Development. Michael oversees organizational programs, staff, and supports 12 municipalities in the county.  He has played an integral  role in creating an environment in Wake County where businesses and people can grow and thrive, and spends most of his time with community partners working to do just that!

Prem Ranganath is vice president of quality & risk management at Trilliant Networks. He is responsible for developing and implementing a comprehensive quality strategy for product engineering. Prem applies design thinking to problem solve with his team and does his part to help them succeed in their professional pursuits.

Rob Axford is business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW Local 553). He has been an instructor with the Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC) for 12 years, treasurer of the Local for 8 years, and spent 2-1/2 years as assistant business manager before being promoted.

Chip Wood is a manager at the NC Division of Workforce Solutions and oversees employees at the NCWorks Career Center in Raleigh.  He started his career at the Employment Security Commission (ESC) in May 1988 as an interviewer in offices that served Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Macon, Jackson, and Swain counties. He became branch manager of the Swain County JobLink in 2000, was promoted to manager of the Murphy ESC office in 2001, and was selected to lead the Durham office in 2010. Chip was named interim manager in Raleigh in 2018 and officially accepted the permanent appointment in 2019.

You can learn more about all of CAWD’s board members here.

Holiday Breakfast

This holiday season, join our board members and staff in a celebration of partnership at CAWD’s Holiday Breakfast! The event takes place on December 5th at the Park Alumni Center at NCSU and includes special guests, a unique feature presentation and great food!  

Watch your email for an invitation!

Workforce Ready 2019

Workforce Ready 2019 will be held on November 19th at the McKimmon Center. The theme is “Disability Works!” CAWD is cohosting along with NC DHHS,LCI, and DisabilityIN. Content is focused on helping businesses discover hidden assets and benefits of hiring persons with disabilities, best practices for reasonable accommodation and to provide other relevant information. Organizations that help businesses implement inclusion programs and that prepare disabled individuals for the workplace will so be present. Be sure to share this event with business partners!

There is no fee to attend but you must register here.

Workforce Ready: Disability Works! is being held as a part of Disability Awareness Month in North Carolina.

Roads to ReEntry Kick-Off!

An information session about “Roads to ReEntry” will be held on Tuesday, October 29th. This $1.5M grant-funded project will help those leaving corrections facilities in Wake and Johnston counties to transition into the workforce.

The kick-off is specifically for partners who submitted letters of support for the grant application and those who may be interested in supporting the program. The purpose of the session is to review components of the grant and establish expectations for fulfilling expected outcomes. Partners will have an opportunity to express concerns and help determine what adjustments should be made for project success.

Watch your email for an invitation! If you do not receive one, contact

Partner Meetings

One of the things CAWD and our partners have been working on is a common referral process for use throughout the  Capital Area NCWorks Career Center System.  In the May meeting,  training was provided as a part of implementing the new referral process. Use of the referral process includes giving partner agencies access to NCWorks Online, something previously not allowed but was critical to making the process as smooth as possible.

In the June meeting, there was discussion around cost sharing and more ways we can leverage one another’s strengths in service to our customers.

Strong partnerships are critical to workforce development. If you haven’t attended a partner’s meeting, we hope you can make one in the future. More meetings are being scheduled, so be on the lookout for your invitation.