Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council & Workforce Development Board Receive NADO Award for Apprenticeship Pilot Program

The Workforce Development Board Mid-Ohio Valley first began meeting with the West Virginia Laborers training facility in April 2017 to discuss partnering for a Registered Apprenticeship pilot program. A flow chart process was created for Apprenticeship Training Accounts to help provide accessibility to both the business and training customers. The WDB-MOV WIOA case managers travel onsite to the training facility to determine eligibility for those attending apprenticeship training. Customers that are found eligible are provided with up to $500 support service money for work-related expenses. These expenses can cover safety glasses, steel toe boots, work coats, fire retardant clothing, and other out of pocket expense that an apprentice may face. The training facility uses a voucher system that WIOA customers take to a local vendor and can purchase their items on the account set up through the training facility. This way the apprentice can take home the required work-related clothing without an out of pocket expense. The WDB-MOV then reimburses the training facility for up to $500 of the cost. The training facility can be reimbursed for the classroom training provided for each customer up to $4,000 for the classroom instructional time. When other RA trades heard about the Pilot program with the WV Laborers Training Facility they were excited to see how we could help their future apprentice trainees. The pilot program very quickly spread to many additional partners and became a program model for West Virginia. 


WDBMOV Releases Request For Proposals for WIOA Youth Program

The Mid-Ohio Valley Workforce Development Board is releasing a Request for Proposals for the WIOA Youth Program for the 2018-2019 program year.  WDB-MOV covers a nine-county area in WV which include Calhoun, Clay, Jackson, Mason, Pleasants, Ritchie, Roane, Wirt, and Wood counties.

A Bidders Conference will be held in mid- April to answer proposers questions concerning the RFP.  A contract will be awarded in May with the new program starting in July 2018.

The RFP deadline has now passed.

Career Advantage Mentor Night

Fifteen Career Advantage participants from Wood and Ritchie counties took part in Mentor Night at the Parkersburg Workforce office in February.  Four local professionals, representing social services, sales, manufacturing, and food and beverage sectors of the workforce, served as mentors for the group.

CA Mentor 2-18   1.jpg

Participants and mentors joined in the Paper Airplane icebreaker activity to get to know and introduce each other to the group. The larger group was then divided into four teams with one mentor per team.

CA Mentor 2-18   2.jpg

Each team then worked on the “No Hands” Cup Stacking challenge. This required each team to stack six Solo cups in a pyramid using only a rubber band and some string. This activity developed cooperation, communication, problem-solving, and teamwork skills. And they had FUN!

CA Mentor 2-18  3.jpg

The teams were then directed to use the same skills to select a sector of industry and create a job and workplace of the future.

CA Mentor 2-18  4.jpg

Mentors led their groups to create a poster that showed how the workplace of the future will be different from what it is today. They then described their job and workplace to all the participants.

CA Mentor 2-18  5.jpg

WorkForce WV partner Division of Rehabilitation Services provided take away gifts for the participants.

Career Advantage at 4th Annual Parkersburg SleepOut

SleepOut photo 2.png

Career Advantage participants were part of the fourth annual Parkersburg SleepOut, November 4th at Jackson Memorial Ball Fields in Vienna, WV.

The annual event is the result of a partnership between Children’s Home Society of WV and Youth Services Systems with the goal of raising awareness of the homeless youth population in the area as well as to raise funds to provide services to the youth.

The Parkersburg SleepOut is an all-night outdoor event  inviting community members to construct a makeshift cardboard shelter to simulate what a night of homelessness is like for homeless teens. Teams competed to build the best structure, raise funds, seek sponsors and bring much needed attention to homeless youth in our community.  

SleepOut photo 1.png

Trophies were given out for the “Best Design,”- The design that best represents the following criteria: creativity, warmth, comfort and livability.

An award was also given for the “Best Theme,”- The design that best represents youth homelessness, promoting homeless awareness: the issues, available resources, and a “call to action.” This year’s National Runaway Safeline theme is “Friends Helping Friends.”

Award Photo SO 2017.png

The Career Advantage team took home the first place trophy for “Best Theme.” Their box had a Wizard of Oz theme and was titled “There’s no Place Like Home.”


Last year the event raised enough money to support 40 homeless youth in the Mid-Ohio Valley. This year they hope to raise around $30,000.

Find more information about CAREER ADVANTAGE here.

WDB MOV Joins the Ohio Business Resource Network

BRN Slide 2017


Janelle Comstock, Director, and the Executive Committee of the WDBMOV announced Friday, October 20, 2017 that the WDBMOV will join the Ohio Business Resource Network (OBRN) in a tristate collaboration to meet business needs in the Mid-Ohio Valley.  Matt Falter, Project Director with the OBRN presented an overview of the project which has been serving Ohio businesses for over 10 years, assisting over 1800 businesses access over $11 million in workforce and economic development programs and incentives.

The Workforce Initiative Association, operator of the OhioMeansJobs Centers in Stark and Tuscarawas Counties in NE Ohio, was awarded a technical assistance planning grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) for the Coal Business United Resource Network (Coal BURN) Real-Time Insights for Real-Time Actions project.   This grant will result in the implementation of a formal multi-state planning process to obtain a better understanding of current and future workforce opportunities in coal-impacted communities in parts of Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

“The vision for a BRN interstate model began over two years ago and the planning grant from ARC will help us formalize and create the foundation for expansion of the BRN process and model to additional workforce development boards in southeastern Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania,” said Matt Falter, Project Director for the OBRN.

The BRN is a partnership representing chambers of commerce, workforce and economic development organizations, universities, colleges, career and technical centers, community organizations, and state and local government agencies- with the workforce development board serving as the administrative entity for the partnership. 

The BRN brings together resource partners who can provide solutions and present options for businesses. The process begins with learning about the business through a comprehensive, confidential interview by BRN representatives.   

 After the interview, the BRN partner organizations are immediately briefed on the businesses’ top challenges and opportunities via electronic format and can instantly offer solutions for that business. The customized proposal is then presented to the business who is free to select the services/solutions that best meet their needs. 

The BRN representative will continue to coordinate services and provide support to the business, ever at the ready to meet needs and provide solutions to grow the business.  From the interview to providing a customized solution package, the process initially takes about two weeks.

The BRN model provides single point of contact for services from multiple of agencies and organizations, delivering experts to help your business grow—all at no charge.   The BRN navigates through the red tape of governmental agencies and programs to determine which funding streams would be best suited to the employer's current and future needs to grow, improve, or expand their businesses.

The BRN is about strengthening our communities by building stronger businesses. By providing a single point of contact to many resources, the BRN makes it easier for businesses to receive the help they need to expand, learn about exporting products, create a succession plan, learn about local workforce development incentives, create a business plan and so much more! 

Miranda Lough will serve as the local BRN Manager, bringing local organizations together to provide the customized solutions needed by businesses in the Mid-Ohio Valley. 


Adult Education: More Than You Imagined

Adult Education is MORE than "just" preparing for your High School Equivalency Diploma! SO MUCH MORE! AND, their services are free to the community!

They can help you prepare for employment and post-secondary education:  resume creation or fine tuning, interview skills, honing your math or basic computer skills, or an IC3 Certification, and career exploration...with instructors who work one-on-one with you  to make sure you succeed.

FAST TRACK programs are designed to help you to accomplish short term goals:  Complete that High School Equivalency Diploma or the IC3 Certification.

If you need help filling out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) (and all of us do), Adult Education can help!!

And if you are in college and need a quiet place to study, their doors are open to you as well!

Or maybe you need help learning English; the English Language Acquisition for English Language Learners class is just what you need!  Literacy classes are also available!

Need a certification to get to that next level?  Adult Education offers certification in Customer Service, and IC3 (Word, Excel, Power Point, Access).  Other opportunities may be available through distance learning depending on the classroom and instructor.

With referral from DHHR, you can attend a SPOKES class and takes steps to become self-sufficient, begin a career, or go to college.  Not to mention the confidence and personal growth that will help you achieve your goals.

They have offices in most of our counties, a great and caring staff to help you take the next step and guide you on the way!

Check out their website  www.resa5adulteducation.org for more details!

R5 AE Locations.jpg

Celebration of Excellence

The Celebration of Excellence for Career Advantage participants took place in late June. Mayor Rapp of Vienna, WV, a member of the Workforce Development Mid-Ohio Valley Youth Council, was the Keynote speaker.

Career Advantage is about developing academic, occupational and social skills. The goal is to create and expose young people to opportunities that will be beneficial to their lives.

Mayor Randy Rapp

Mayor Rapp and Youth Committee Chair Ron Blankenship presented several awards at the Celebration:

The Youth of Excellence Award was awarded to two participants who have shown outstanding work in the achievement of their goals in life, work and leadership skills and are taking the next steps to achieve their dreams:

Nikki Chase and Marquis Williamson were selected by a panel of judges to receive the 2017 Youth of Excellence Award for their perseverance and dedication to achieving their goals.

The Spirit of Career Advantage Award is given to Dakota Wolfe, who showed the most overall growth and participation since beginning the program

 Pictured left to right: Dakota Wolfe, Marquis Williamson and Nikki Chase.

Pictured left to right: Dakota Wolfe, Marquis Williamson and Nikki Chase.

The Rising Star Award is given to participants in recognition of outstanding progress toward their goals. The following received the Rising Star award:

Ryan Campbell
Kaitlynne Carlisle
Charles Clay
Justin Deal

Devin Dowler
Amber King
Bill Lowe
Randy Ruff
Cody Warth

rising star award winners

Recognition must also be given to the 2016-2017 Graduates:

Janson Bailey, Bethany Bird, Samantha Birchfield, Kaitlynne Carlisle, Cheyenne Dooley, Devin Dowler, Matt Harper, Quinton Hoffman, Jacob Hogue, Amber King, Daniel Marinar, Kayla Parsons, Marybeth Rice, Randy Ruff, Tyler Runion, Danielle Salisbury, Jasmine Sharp, Trey Test, and Marquis Williamson.

Workforce Development Board moves to a new location

MOVRC building shot

The Workforce Development Board Mid-Ohio Valley is now in a new location at 709 Market Street Parkersburg.   The new location provides the meeting space needed for the WDB-MOV board and committees to meet.  Our new space was formally part of the WVUP downtown campus and with the renovation, (featuring an open ceiling and exposed brick) now offers plenty of space for all programs at the Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council—the WDB-MOV’s fiscal agent.  

WDB-MOV staff has been busy settling into the new space, negotiating contracts for One-Stop services for both adults and youth and writing the Local Plan for 2016-2020 (find a copy of it here).

Our vision: A quality skilled workforce that advances the economic development of the region by meeting the needs of employer and job seekers.

Our mission:  Building a quality workforce for today and tomorrow.

We continue to work with employers who are interested in mentoring young adults and helping them develop the skills needed in today’s workforce.  Subsidies may be available to assist you as you mentor the future workforce.  Contact Janelle at 304-424-7271 ext. 102 for additional information.

WDB-MOV staff facilitates sector meetings for employers in the Health Care, Manufacturing and Information Technology industries.  Meetings are held with these industries on a monthly or bi-monthly basis.  If you are interested in participating, call Gail at 304-424-7271 ext. 113.

If you or someone you know, need assistance with employment, career exploration or training we can help.  Call 304-420-4531 ext. 59650 and ask how we can help you gain the skills you need to become employed in the Mid-Ohio Valley.