Friday, April 22, 2011

DC Works! One Stop Shop Career Center Moving Into CCDC Backus

 With all the announced projects coming to the District (and specifically Ward 5), the apparent lack of qualified DC residents to fill the forecoming job openings is clear.  While the expansion of UDC-CCDC throughout the city provides one means to creating an in demand workforce, the DC Department of Employment Services (DoES) provides another avenue to create a more competent and valued workforce.  DoES runs a series of Career Centers that provide various levels and types of training and assistance to the Districts current workforce.  However, news of a DC Works! One Stop Career Center moving into the newly renovated CCDC Backus Campus is causing quite a stir in the surrounding communities. 
   The move, initially announced in a Feb, 2011 brief given by the DoES, will close the current One Stop Center on Franklin St, NE  and relocate it to the CCDC Backus Campus this month.    The DC Works! One Stop Career Centers provide job seekers with a number of employment opportunities. Each center provides career counseling, career planning, resume assistance, direct job placement, classroom and on-the-job training, access to America's Job Bank (both online and via telephone), information about local and national labor markets, unemployment compensation and much more.  Daily workshops are held to better train the DC workforce to compete in todays local and national job markets.  The move would allow DoES to leverage CCDC's ability to provide  training in Health care, Construction trades, Hospitality and Office and Administrative technology in their training and placement efforts.
  At first glance this move appears to be a natural fit, and would benefit not only CCDC and DoES, but the community as a whole.  Many local residents however, seem to see it in a differnet light.  Many feel this agreement was made with little neighborhood involvement, and almost no notification.  An open house was held at CCDC with Councilmember Thomas Wednesday (20 April 2011) afternoon, but many people only received notification of the meeting late that very afternoon.  Some residents equate the One Stop Center as  an employment "DMV," which will bring many people into the neighborhood and disturbe the quiet peace many enjoy.  Some fear that the increase in people traffic to the area will bring in an undesired element.  All concerns for increased traffic and crime aside, the lack of preceived communitcation between city leaders and the community seems to be the real issue.  Many community members do not fully understand the size and scope of this proposed move, or even what DC Works! programs provide the community.  The impact on the neighborhood will be very clear soon, as the new one Stop Center will be opening it's doors in meer weeks.

How do you Feel about the relocation of the DC Works! One Stop Career Center to CCDC?


Anonymous said...

Many neighborhoods in this city are begging for a One Stop - we should be thrilled to have one in our back yard. One Stops attract *job seekers* - people proactively looking for work and *businesses* looking for workers, not idle loiterers. I welcome the additional foot traffic between the CCDC campus and Metro station and hope that it adds to the safety of our community (and perhaps even attracts some more food or retail). Moreover, this new location will much better serve the Ward 5 community than the run-down, sorry excuse for an employment center it replaced on Franklin Street NE.

So long as there's a designated smoking area that prevents people from lingering in front of the building and throwing butts and trash on our sidewalks (which has been an issue at the MN Ave location), I think this is a positive development.

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I think this is a positive development..


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