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Harrisburg, April 3, 2018 — State Senator John Yudichak (D-Luzerne/Carbon) announced today that the Hershey Company, the Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce, and the Lehigh Carbon Community College have received funding to support pre-apprenticeship and registered apprenticeship programs from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.

The Hershey Company’s Hazleton Plant is receiving a $70,000 Pre-Apprenticeship/Apprenticeship Grant and a $45,495 Capacity Building Grant. The Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce is receiving a $42,280 Capacity Building Grant. Additionally, the Lehigh Carbon Community College is receiving an $80,000 Pre-Apprenticeship/Apprenticeship Grant.

“The Hershey Company, the Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce, and Lehigh Carbon Community College recognize the true impact pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs have on strengthening our workforce and driving economic growth in northeastern Pennsylvania,” said Senator John Yudichak.      

“We are honored to be selected by Governor Wolf for these important apprenticeship grants at our Hershey plant in Hazleton. We will use the grants to cover on-site and vocational training costs as we develop our unique program,” said Stephen Knight, Hazleton plant manager. “Apprenticeships are an important way for aspiring workers to get the experience needed to work in today’s sophisticated and complex manufacturing environment where the required skill-set is dramatically different from even 10 years ago.”

“We are very excited to learn our Chamber will be receiving one of Governor Wolf’s Capacity Building Grants. The Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce has been working diligently with the community to better connect our students with our employers. This grant will enable us to develop programs which will create a direct link between employers who are looking for skilled, productive employees and job seekers who are looking for stable careers to earn good wages,” said Michelle Mikitish, Executive Vice President of the Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce.

The Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce’s first Registered Apprenticeship program will be for a team management apprentice. The program will prepare participants to take on the responsibility of managing the day-to-day activities of a group of employees. Learning objectives will include, but not be limited to, effective team leadership and communication, development of performance goals, standards and feedback, conflict resolution, effective discipline, and delegation. Their goal is to implement this program with 2-4 employers and 10-15 apprentices by September 2018.

The Pre-Apprenticeship/Apprenticeship Grant supports pre-apprenticeship programs that have an active relationship with apprenticeship programs registered in Pennsylvania; or apprenticeship programs that are already registered in Pennsylvania. The Capacity Building Grant supports businesses, industry associations, chambers of commerce, training providers, career and technical centers, and intermediaries interested in sponsoring registered apprenticeship programs.

The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry awards these grants through Local Workforce Development Boards.

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