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Forward Delaware must move forward quickly on training

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Forward Delawarea massive plan to train Delawareans who are unemployed or underemployed from the pandemic, has some training clearly defined and ready for job hunters. For other sectors, though, it’s not easy to find the promised training to enhance or gain skills on their landing pages.

Improving the landing pages is critical because the $10 million in federal CARES Act funds must be allocated by the end of the year and fully spent by the end of March, William Potter, executive director of the Delaware Workforce Development board, told Delaware Business Times.

Training is subsidized on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The initiative, announced on Oct. 7, focuses on five sectors that officials said have strong jobs potential: health care; computers and information technology; hospitality and food services; transportation and logistics; and construction and trades. 

Here’s the current situation on Forward Delaware for job-seekers.

Health care

Delaware Technical Community College is the main trainer for health care, with Polytech and Sussex Tech also participating. 

Delaware Tech’s landing page lists seven careers: certified clinical medical administrative assistant, certified nursing assistant, dental assistant, hemodialysis technician, patient care technician, pharmacy technician and phlebotomy technician. The college’s programs in these fields run 550 to 1,880 hours.

Information technology

Tech Impact is the main trainer for information technology. Its landing page says applicants will get “an initial screening interview. During the interview, we’ll determine which program is the best match for you based on your interests and skillset.”

Partner programs come from Delaware Tech, ITWorks, Tech Elevator, the University of Delaware, Wilmington University and Zip Code Wilmington.

The training is in database management and development (Oracle and SQL); networking and security (Cisco Certified Entry Level Technician I and II); general IT (CompTIA A+, CompTIA Net+, Microsoft); and programming (JAVA, C# and JAVAscript).

Hospitality and food services

The Delaware Restaurant Association Educational Foundation is the main trainer, with the Food Bank of Delaware and the University of Delaware participating. 

The foundation’s landing page at this point is just a listing of jobs.

“We are building out a large-scale training portal that will go live December 1st!,” said Carrie Leishman, CEO of the foundation and its parent association. “Our training will cut deep into Delaware – huge win for our citizens!!!”

Transportation and logistics

Polytech Adult Education Division is the main trainer, with Delaware Tech, New Castle County Vo-Tech, Sussex Tech and the Food Bank of Delaware also participating.

Its landing page connects those seeking training with “program advisors who will help them identify which program is the best fit for their specific needs,” said Jeremy McEntire, assistant director of adult education. “We are in the process of setting up a specific landing page for the Forward Delaware programs and anticipate we will have it available this coming Monday.”

Construction and trades

The Delaware Skills Center of New Castle County Vo-Tech is the main trainer, with Delaware Tech, Polytech and Sussex Tech participating.

Its landing page goes to the skills center’s home page, but job seekers really want to go to another page on the center’s cite for the programs. 

The enter offers welding, HVAC and electrical programs. Delaware Tech offers HVAC certification and construction technology programs. Polytech offers welding and MIG/TIG welding and three building construction core programs (electric, HVAC and plumbing).  Sussex Tech offers pre-apprenticeship programs in electrical core plus and plumbing core plus. 


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