March 2017 - In This Issue:
On February 23, 2017 representatives from GLWDB employer partners Washington Savings Bank, TJX Companies, Lowell General Hospital, Lowell National Historical Park, and Middlesex Community College participated in the filming of an informational video to help students prepare for the job fair at Lowell High School on April 27.

Produced by Lowell Telecommunications Corporation and facilitated by GLWDB Connecting Activities School-to-Work Coordinator Beatriz Sierra, the video includes tips on interviewing for jobs, dressing appropriately and soft skills that employers are looking for in job candidates.

(l - r) Vichtcha Kong, Kerrilynne O'Brien, Maureen Fitzpatrick, Beatriz Sierra (standing), Tess Shatzer, Karen James

The video will be seen by hundreds, if not thousands of students as it will be shown on monitors around the school, during advisory periods and in the main cafeteria in the days leading up to the job fair.

The GLWDB is grateful for the enthusiastic participation of our many employer partners.

GLWDB Connecting Activities Job Fair Video
GLWDB Connecting Activities Job Fair Video

Labor Market Snapshot
On March 1, 2017 the Top 5 Greater Lowell Employers with job openings are:
  1. Kronos
  2. Raytheon
  3. UMass Lowell
  4. Merck
  5. Sigma-Aldrich
The Top 5 Job Titles are:
  1. Software Engineer
  2. Senior Software Engineer
  3. Customer Service Rep.
  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
December 2016 .  In the Greater Lowell Area 150,849  workers were in the labor force, of which 146,479  were employed and 4,370   were unemployed.  The unemployment rate was 2.9 % , up 0.2% from the previous month .

Statewide, in December, the largest over-the-month job gains occurred in the Education and Health Services; Construction; Professional, Scientific and Business Services sectors.

Nationally, total non-farm payroll employment rose by 227,000 in January. The unemployment rate was little changed at 4.8%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Job gains occurred in Retail Trade, Construction, and Financial activities.
Did You Know?
The union membership rate in the United States-the percentage of wage and salary workers who were members of unions-was 10.7 percent in 2016. Twenty-seven states and the District of Columbia had union membership rates below the U.S. average, while 23 states had rates above it, including MassachusettsFor more information and an interactive map view the full report.
Massachusetts Job Quest
March 1, 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
News from the Director
As many of you know I recently announced my plans to retire at the end of March to spend more time with my family, especially visiting our two granddaughters who live in Salt Lake City and traveling with my husband. I've been contemplating retirement for awhile, but wanted to assist with WIOA implementation and in particular, Procurement of the One-Stop Career Center Operator.  With that successfully completed, and plans in place for the next critical component of WIOA (Local Partner MOUs) moving forward, the end of March seemed like a reasonable time frame.  This decision was not easy, as I'm very committed to the work we do and especially value the relationships I've developed over the years.  My last Quarterly Board meeting will be on March 31, 2017 at which time I'll see many of you in person, but for our other partners I wanted to use this opportunity to say thank you for your collaboration, guidance and all the assistance you've provided to GLWDB initiatives these past years.  You've been great friends and colleagues and I'll miss each of you!

The interview process for a new GLWDB Director will get underway shortly, but in the interim, please direct WDB-specific questions to Nancy McGovern, GLWDB Senior Program Manager. As always, Career Center of Lowell questions should be directed to Shannon Norton, Executive Director.

Best regards,


Grant Awards
The GLWDB was recently awarded three grants, all related to advanced manufacturing initiatives:
  • $5,000 AMP It Up grant from MassDevelopment to promote advanced manufacturing careers to high school guidance counselors and their students
  • $12,000 Connecting Activities STEM Career, Vocational and Technical Education grant from the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to promote advanced manufacturing careers to underrepresented or non-traditional students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math programs
  • $45,000 Advanced Manufacturing Pipeline grant (in partnership with the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium) from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development to reach out to unemployed or underemployed adults and create a pipeline to advanced manufacturing training programs and jobs

Baker-Polito Administration Awards $7.9M in Workforce Training Grants
The Baker-Polito Administration recently awarded more than $7.9 million in workforce training fund grants to 111 companies to train current or newly hired workers. This round of grant funding will help train 5,243 workers, and is expected to create 522 new jobs.

Among those awarded a grant were Greater Lowell companies ATI Flowform (Billerica); Precise Industries, Rapid Micro Biosystems and Winn Residential (Lowell); and 1A Auto (Westford.)

For more information read the  press release.

Connecting Activities Leadership Conference
On March 2nd, 2017 GLWDB staff attended the 
Connecting Activities Leadership Conference.
Representatives from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education spoke about preparing students with disabilities for Adult Life and Secondary Transition: providing opportunities to students to ensure a successful transition to competitive employment, education, community involvement and independent living with ongoing support  from family, community and adult services. 
In addition, staff from the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC), which works with students and adults with disabilities, discussed their services. 
There was also a presentation by the Division of Industrial Accidents on workers' compensation, including employer obligations and state mandates for student internships and work-based learning experiences.

Growing the Innovation Economy
On Friday, March 3, 2017 the GLWDB hosted a STEM Roundtable discussion led by Secretary of Education Jim Peyser as part of the Massachusetts STEM Advisory Council MA STEM @Work Initiative. The roundtable was held at Middlesex Community College with education and employer partners joining in a discussion focused on promoting STEM internship opportunities for high-school students.  

Our special thanks to Secretary Peyser, Middlesex Community College President James Mabry, Lowell Public Schools Superintendent Salah Khefaoui, Lowell High School Headmaster Brian Martin, the Greater Lowell Chamber of Commerce, Lowell General Hospital, Align Credit Union, Enterprise Bank, Raytheon, Thermo Fisher, Kronos and the Career Center of Lowell.

For more information on youth internships please contact GLWDB Youth Program Manager Cathleen Sturtevant.

GLWDB & Career C enter of Lowell Events
  • March 23, 2017 - GLWDB Workforce Issues Committee Meeting, 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. 107 Merrimack Street 3rd Floor,  Lowell, MA, 01852
  • March 31, 2017 - GLWDB Quarterly Meeting, UMass Lowell Innovation Hub, 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., 110 Canal Street, Lowell, MA, 01852
  • April 27, 2017 - GLWDB Connecting Activities Youth Job Fair , 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.Lowell High School Cafeteria, 50 Father Morissette Boulevard, Lowell, MA, 01852
  • May 25, 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
  • April 4, 2017 - Greater Lowell Chamber of Commerce 22nd Annual Municipal Breakfast, 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.Holiday Inn Tewksbury/Andover, 4 Highwood Drive, Tewksbury, MA, 01876
  • May 2, 9, 16 & 23, 2017 - Financial Tune Up Boot Camp, The Merrimack Valley Small Business Center, 88 Middle Street #202,
    Lowell, MA, 01852  
Gail Brown                                                                Raymond Wrobel
Director                                                                     Chairman