January 2017 - In This Issue:
A number of quality manufacturing training programs for machining and electronics are available in our area and graduates are being interviewed and hired; but the demand remains high.

In order to help meet this demand, on November 10th, GLWDB and NAMC staff accompanied students and staff from the Lowell Career Academy on a tour of Excell Solutions in Billerica. Greg Lennartz of Excell, a member of the GLWDB, provided the students with a look at all aspects of his company operations from machining and sheet metal fabrication to computer-aided design and quality control. The students were very interested and engaged in Greg's presentation.

Greg Lennartz (l) of Excell Solutions and Robin Dion of NAMC

This work was supported by a grant from MassDevelopment for outreach to guidance counselors and their students to create career awareness around manufacturing.
Labor Market Snapshot
On January 3, 2017 the Top 5 Greater Lowell Employers with job openings are:
  1. Kronos
  2. Raytheon
  3. UMass Lowell
  4. United Technologies
  5. EMD
The Top 5 Job Titles are:
  1. Software Engineer
  2. Customer Service Rep.
  3. Senior Software Engineer
  4. Administrative Assistant
  5. Registered Nurse
For more information view the CEB TalentNeuron report.
Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts released the latest Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment numbers for
November 2016 .  In the Greater Lowell Area 150,003  workers were in the labor force, of which 145,993  were employed and 4,010   were unemployed.  The unemployment rate was 2.7 % , down 0.8% from the previous month .

Statewide, in November, the largest over-the-month job gains occurred in the Financial Activities; Professional, Scientific and Business Services and Construction sectors.

Nationally, total non-farm payroll employment rose by 178,000 in November. The unemployment rate was little changed at 4.6%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Employment in Professional & Business Services and Health Care continued to trend up.
Did You Know?
Nine states had significant over-the-year unemployment rate decreases in November 2016. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, t he largest decrease was in Massachusetts, where the unemployment rate went from 4.9 percent in November 2015 to 2.9 percent in November 2016, a change of -2.0 percentage points. For more information and an interactive map view the full report.
Massachusetts Job Quest
January 3, 2017

Total Job Postings:



Greater Lowell Job Postings:



Visit MASS JobQuest  

In Massachusetts, many jobs can be accessed through registered apprenticeship programs.  No longer just in the traditional trades, t here are over 850 jobs in a wide range of industries that can be learned through apprenticeship training. For more information visit the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, Division of Apprentice Standards website.

The GLWDB, in partnership with the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (NAMC), will assist in recruiting up to 64 apprenticeship trainees for positions in manufacturing including industrial technician, machine operator, assembler and machine set-up operator at 15 advanced manufacturing employers.

NAMC will receive a portion of a $2.9 million grant to fund the Massachusetts Apprenticeship Initiative (MAI) through the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, Department of Career Services.
WIOA Update 

To learn more about WIOA please utilize the following resources:

If you have questions please contact Gail Brown, GLWDB Director or Shannon Norton Calles, Career Center of Lowell Director. 
Quick Links
GLWDB Updates
Staff Updates
We are pleased to announce that Nancy McGovern joined the WDB as Senior Program Manager.  Nancy's extensive experience with legislative policy, procedures and regulations will be a great asset as we continue with WIOA implementation. 
We are also pleased to announce that Cathy Sturtevant has been appointed to the Position of Youth Program Manager. Cathy has extensive experience working with youth coming from our Connecting Activities programming.
With our staff vacancies filled we are looking forward to a successful and busy 2017!  

GLWDB Engages UMass Labor Education Program
The UML Labor Education Program has offered a research assistant to the GLWDB. The RA will provide quantitative and qualitative research on the successes and challenges of the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium. A final report will be used for marketing and recruitment efforts.

GLWDB Quarterly Meeting
On December 9, 2016 the GLWDB held its quarterly meeting . Highlights included a special presentation by the Career Center of Lowell's Customer-Centered Design Challenge Team. With the assistance of community partners, the Lowell team designed new ways to orient customers to the career center and improve services. 

Career Center of Lowell Customer-Centered Design Challenge Team.  Front (l-r): Stacey Thompson, Nancy Gagnon, Shannon Norton Calles. Rear (l-r): Cathy Byrnes, Amy Veillette, Bob McIntosh

Other highlights included:

*Election of Officers
*Partnership MOUs
*Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium update
*OSCC Procurement
*Career Center Youth and Adult Program Performance

Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (NAMC)  
NAMC has expanded the number of training partners to now include Bunker Hill Community College, Somerville and Medford Vocational High Schools. The next round of advanced manufacturing training, in conjunction with these new partners, will begin on January 23rd, 2017.  Twelve  Machining Trainees and  13 Electronic Technician Trainees will be preparing for jobs in an industry that is looking to fill high-paying, skilled positions. To date 140 individuals have been trained under the consortium.

NAMC was recently awarded additional funding from an apprenticeship expansion grant to train 20 apprentices in advanced manufacturing occupations.

Save the Date for the 2017 Connecting Activities Youth Job Fair
The Connecting Activities Youth Job Fair will be held on Thursday, April 27, 2017 at 3:00 p.m. in the Lowell High School Cafeteria. Last year,  458  students and 64 employers participated from the hospitality, food service, banking, retail and health care sectors. More than 100 youth were hired.

One-Stop Career Center Competitive Selection Process
The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) requires that Local Boards, in agreement with the Chief Elected Official, select One-Stop Career Center Operators through a competitive process to be conducted every four years.  Operator/Service Providers selected through the competitive process must be in place and operating the Local One-Stop Career Center by July 1, 2017.  Greater Lowell is in the final phases of the selection process and will make an official announcement in the near future. 
WIOA Partner Convening
WIOA emphasizes full and effective partnerships between Local Boards and One-Stop Career Center Required Partners including DTA, DUA, MRC and others (as locally defined) to improve job and career options through collaboration and integrated service design.  In accordance with WIOA Regulations, local umbrella MOUs will be developed and executed between the Local Board and Partners relating to the operation of the one-stop service delivery system.  At the State-wide WIOA convening meeting in December we had an opportunity to meet with our partners and begin discussions on next steps.  Local partner meetings will commence in February.
Regional Planning
Regional Planning, an initiative of the Massachusetts Workforce Skills Cabinet, has been designed to bring together Education, Workforce and Economic Development Partners to identify high priority regional career pathways and develop solutions to meet the needs of job seekers and employers.  For the purposes of Regional Planning, seven "planning areas" consisting of existing Workforce Regions have been identified.  Greater Lowell, as part of the Northeast Region, will work with our partner workforce boards from the North Shore and Merrimack Valley on this initiative.

GLWDB & Career C enter of Lowell Events
  • January 18, 2017 - Verizon Hiring Event at Career Center of Lowell, 1:00 p.m. 107 Merrimack Street,  Lowell, MA 01852
  • January 26, 2017 - GLWDB Workforce Issues Committee Meeting , 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., 107 Merrimack Street, 3rd Floor, Lowell, MA, 01852
Greater Lowell Events
Gail Brown                                                                Raymond Wrobel
Director                                                                     Chairman