EMPLOYER PARTNERSHIP OFFICE
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MARKETING RATIONALE : WHAT: EPO is a human capital strategy for Military leaders and employers to address major industry personnel shortfalls in the private sector and critical career field in the Military. EPO is an enhanced career-services program that collaborates with the private sector to match skill sets between Servicemembers and private sector jobs; capitalize on shared training and credentialing between the military and the private sector and identify and implement future workforce innovations. WHEN: The U.S. Army Reserve stood up its Employer Partnership Office as an initiative in the summer of 2007 after LTG Jack Stultz listened to civilian employersâ€™ concerns that Army policies, such as Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN) negatively impacted Warrior Citizen employees and employers in communities across the country. The Army Reserve signed its first two partnership agreements on April 14, 2008 with the American Trucking Associations and INOVA Health Systems. In July 2009, the office expanded and the Army National Guard came onboard as an active partner. WHO: EPO connects employers to employee candidates currently serving in a good status with the Reserve Components, service members leaving active military service, retirees, veterans and spouses of service members. WHERE: EPO is offered to all 54 states and territories as well as at least one European nation. EPO has over 1,100 signed companies. On average, between a quarter million and a half million jobs are posted on the EPO website www.employerpartnership.org, with a plethora of career field opportunities. Program Support Managers have briefed more than 38,500 Soldiers, 1800 unit leaders and 800 units on EPO. WHY: Retaining Servicemembers in the Reserve Components over the long-term will enhance our technical skill based force; lower personnel and training turbulence, ultimately providing better Servicemember and units at a lower cost as well as stronger families. American employers are very passionate about their desire to hire Citizen Soldiers and to support their sacrifices and service to the Nation. EPO is the organized network that will link Employers to Servicemembers by offering and providing
HOW: EPO is currently not funded; however, the National Guard Bureauâ€™s (NGB) Acquisition Planning Board (APB) has authorized the implementation of the program. Contact NGB POC for details related to this program. EXPECTED ROI: The long-term program goal of EPO is to incorporate ALL Servicemembers of all Armed Forces Branches. With EPO, the National Guard retains quality Guard Members, supports their civilian career, and the Continuum of Service concept, thus a positive investment for America.
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MARKETING RATIONALE: WHAT: Forward March is a skills training program that prepares unemployed or under-employed adults to develop a career path. Components are customized to include GED completion for high school dropouts (when necessary), occupational training, and career potential job placement and retention. Operation Forward March provides individuals with the necessary skills, confidence, and decision-making capabilities that allow them to take control of their lives to achieve economic self-sufficiency. There is no Army National Guard (ARNG) enlistment requirement for program participants or graduates. WHEN: Training is conducted Monday through Friday at hours that meet participant needs. Training cycles can last from 2 to 12 weeks depending on participant growth, goals and accomplishments. Case management, job placement and job retention activities are conducted throughout the program cycle. WHO: Enrollees include older youth and adults, ages 16-24+ who are no longer enrolled in school. Some participants are high school graduates and others are high school non-completers who need GED preparation. Forward March is supported by Health and Human Servicesâ€™ Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and by Department of Laborâ€™s Workforce Investment Act funds. The program is primarily administered by participating State NG agencies in partnership with a local non-profit agency or a competitively selected service provider. Marketing and coordination assistance is provided by National Guard Bureau Education Division, Employment and Education Outreach Branch (ARNG-GSE-J). WHERE: Training is conducted at local ARNG Armories or other available facilities within each community. Currently operating in Florida, Hawaii and Mississippi, Forward March is the recipient of the Pro Patria Award, Minuteman Mike Award and was nominated by Florida for the national Employer Support Freedom Award. WHY: Forward March builds stronger communities, increases community awareness of the National
Guard and enhances the image of all partnering agencies. ARNG recruiters are provided with an opportunity to interact with non-prior service prospects while networking among participants’ friends and family members within each community. This program has had a positive impact on end strength in communities where is implemented. HOW: Funding from non-DOD agencies is used to support the program, with no state or matching funds required. Contact an ARNG POC to discuss details of how meaningful partnerships among other state and local agencies have resulted in achieving mutual goals and objectives through Forward March EXPECTED ROI: The end result of Forward March is job placement, including military, which increases ARNG readiness. Studies have proven that in all communities where NG outreach programs operate, ARNG readiness is either met or exceeded. Additionally, developing employable citizens adds value back to communities in which we serve so we accomplish our community based mission using non-DOD funding. THE ACTION PLAN: • • • • • •
Brief The Adjutants General Brief State Executive Leadership ARNG-GSE-J and State NG explore program funding opportunities Assign state NG Program Manager to work with ARNG-GSE-J staff State NG may contract with service provider for turn-key delivery Guard members as professional role models and volunteer mentors can discuss ARNG opportunities for education and training with program graduates and potential recruits.
GUARD APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM INITIATIVE (GAPI)
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MARKETING RATIONALE: WHAT: To help Soldiers improve their job skills and establish a lifetime career, the Army National Guard has established the Guard Apprenticeship Program Initiative (GAPI) - a partnering with the Department of Labor (DOL) in coordination with Veterans Administration (VA) offices. The GAPI program will help to address Soldier employment needs while providing Soldiers from the Army National Guard and the Army Reserve an opportunity to gain civilian employment and certification, while continuing to serve in the all-volunteer force or while transitioning back to the civilian workforce. GAPI is an “earn while you learn” experience whereby Soldiers learn new concepts and skills and also obtain national certification in one of over 100 trades while earning wages. These trades are mapped to over 107 military occupational specialties (MOSs) and eligible Soldiers receive VA educational benefits while they pursue an apprenticeship program. The apprenticeship combines an educational curriculum with on-the-job training supervised by a trade professional or supervisor; apprenticeship training takes one to five years to complete or 2,000-documented work hours to become fully qualified in an occupation or trade. HOW: On November 9, 2009, the Presidential Executive Order 13518 “Employment of Veterans in the Federal Government,” was issued to emphasize the criticality of developing relationships and implementing training programs for veterans. In light of this event, the Army National Guard (ARNG) proposed the formation of a program that will not only complement the Veterans Employment Initiative, but will also increase every soldier’s opportunity for education and employment. This proposal is now formally known as the Guard Apprenticeship Program Initiative (GAPI). WHY: As the Army National Guard (ARNG) does not have a National-level Apprenticeship program, the ARNG sought to establish a National Apprenticeship Program with accompanying certification. GAPI is for Reserve Component Soldiers and Servicemembers, primarily Army, (but open to all services) and includes national credentialing. GAPI incorporates the components that United Services Military Apprenticeship Program (USMAP) and Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL) are lacking as GAPI includes Army, Reserve Component and national credentialing.
Without this program, ARNG and Reserve Component Soldiers will not have neither the translated MOSs that the NGS will provide, nor the same access to GI Bill benefits for apprenticeships [as their active duty counterparts do]; Thus, “bridging this GAP.” Furthermore, total job openings during the 2008-18 period are projected to be 50.9 million, and 19.6 million of these jobs are expected to be in the short-term on-the-job training category. Sixteen of the 30 detailed occupations list short-term on-the-job training as the most significant source of education/training; short-and moderate-term on-the-job training are the most significant sources of postsecondary education/training for 17 of the 30 detailed occupations projected to have the largest employment growth Enter GAPI…providing just that-on-the-job training. WHEN/WHERE: Developing and fostering the relationship between the ARNG, DoL and DVA is essential for the success of GAPI. The ARNG and DoL are jointly developing the National Guideline Standards (NGS) for GAPI—anticipated completion date of Winter 2010; tentatively, the NGS formal signing ceremony is slated for November 5, 2010. Additionally, the ARNG initiated a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), outlining the agreement between the ARNG & the DVA. The MOA provides a vital link between the ARNG & the DVA, ultimately assisting Reserve Component Soldiers in receiving educational benefits for apprenticeships; the projected completion date is Winter 2010. The GAPI Program is in its final conceptualization stages and will ideally enter its first year of operation at the initial pilot sites [in Washington, DC and Baltimore, Md.] prior to the closing of CY 2010. WHO: The GAPI program has established a network of contractors who provide administrative support primarily in relation to the efforts associated with the DoL, the DVA, and the National Guard Bureau Employment and Education Outreach Branch. Contractors will increasingly provide more support to develop and sustain GAPI within the respective commands from the 54 states and territories. EXPECTED ROI: In his first official State of the Union address, President Barack Obama stated, “Jobs must be our Number One focus in 2010;” GAPI mirrors his sentiments with the goal of assisting approximately 100,000 ARNG and Reserve Component Soldiers in obtaining civilian positions. As the program evolves and matures, we hope to see this figure significantly increase. NOTE: The formal initiation of GAPI will occur when Department of Labor (DOL) and ARNG officially sign the National Guideline Standards, the formal document that will govern and guide GAPI. Anticipated date is November 5, 2010.
MOBILE LEARNING CENTER: THE ENERGY LAB
MARKETING RATIONALE: WHAT: The Mobile Learning Center program consists of 3 keystone parts: the physical learning lab, the national math and science contest, and the online web portal of resources for students, teachers, and communities. “The Energy Lab” is the touring vehicle, a fully mobile 63’ Rapid Deployment Vehicle that transforms into an interactive, remote classroom filled with educational, fun and inspiring learning tools that will encourage high-school students to excel at science and math. On board the trailer is a 24-seat theater with a powerful sound and lighting system that will provide an enhanced multimedia learning experience while introducing students to the platform of energy efficiency and environment. Off board the 27’x27’ tent contains four separate interactive exhibits focusing on the four elements: earth, water, wind and fire. WHEN: Currently, the MLC will be on tour October 2010 through February 2011. WHO: “The Energy Lab” will be visiting high schools with the greatest need for math and science educational enhancement. The current tour route targets schools with below average 2009 8th Grade NAEP scores in both math and science. In addition to aiding students, the MLC will provide teachers with innovative and engaging tools assist in motivating students to fully engage in their educational experience. WHERE: Currently the tour includes Ballou Senior High School in Washington, DC, Dekalb County schools in GA, and communities and schools in AL, TN, AR, LA, TX, NM, AZ, NV & CA. WHY: In 2009, President Obama launched “Educate to Innovate,” an initiative designed to improve the participation and performance of America’s students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The MLC will support the development of STEM education standards across the country and encourage kids to stay in school, graduate, and pursue education in the fastest growing fields of the global workforce.
HOW: Currently, the program is funded through ARNG-GSE. In future years, the MLC will seek to partner with educational agencies, leading companies in STEM fields, foundations, non-profits, science and engineering societies and others interested in investing in youth through this program. Working together, multiple agencies can leverage available funds to extend the reach and effectiveness of “The Energy Lab.” EXPECTED ROI: Through the MLC, the National Guard will serve communities in a new fashion and open doors to establish enduring local relationships. By spurring students to engage in education, graduate high school, and pursue further education, a larger pool of eligible recruits is developed. As a community based organization, the NG has the opportunity to lead the Nation and the armed forces in providing educational resources to motivate our youth to meet the demands in today’s increasingly competitive global market. COL CRAUN QUOTE: “The National Guard’s Mobile Learning Center program brings an exciting new dimension to learning and teaching,” said Colonel Diana Craun, Division Chief of the National Guard Bureau Education, Incentive & Employment division. “The National Guard is devoted to our communities and to ensuring that our children are prepared to meet the challenges of an increasingly competitive global workforce. The Mobile Learning Center will be on the road, bringing educational opportunities and fun experiences directly to our kids so they are best prepared for a bright future.”
OPERATION ABOUT FACE
MARKETING RATIONALE: WHAT: A community outreach program designed to prevent high school dropouts and reduce juvenile crime while promoting lifelong self-sufficiency. About Face! provides activity-based training with a strong focus on employability skills, including health and fitness in many locations. Participants are not required to enlist in the Army National Guard (ARNG). WHEN: After-school sessions operate Monday through Thursday approximately 1530-1800 hrs. Summer sessions run six hours per day, Monday through Friday, for three consecutive weeks. WHO: The primary target population is financially disadvantaged in-school youth, ages 13-18. Other barriers include academic deficiency, pregnancy, parental incarceration, foster care, runaways, etc. which may prohibit high school completion. The program is primarily administered by the state National Guard (NG) agencies in partnership with a local non-profit agency or competitively selected service provider, with marketing and coordination assistance from Army National Guard Education, Incentives, and Employment Division (ARNG-GSE-J). QUALITY ASSURANCE: -Meets all eligibility and regulatory requirements of the Department of Education (21st Century Community Learning Centers), Department of Labor (Workforce Investment Act) and Health & Human Services (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) -Performance results are monitored through benchmarks and are incorporated into program delivery WHERE: Training is conducted at local ARNG Armories or other available facilities within each community. A total of 50 site locations have operated in as many as eleven states and territories. *Indicates currently operating states Alabama
North Carolina (1)*
District of Columbia (1)*
WHY: About Face! unifies our communities making them stronger and safer by increasing high school graduation rates, reducing juvenile crime and promoting self-sufficiency among youth. It also increases community awareness and enhances the image of the ARNG while creating meaningful partnerships among other state and local agen¬cies with mutual goals and interest for today’s youth. HOW: All (100%) funding for the program is derived via grant awards or direct allocations from nonDOD agencies, with no state matching funds or state general revenue required. Funding sources include DOL’s Workforce Investment Act, HHS’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and the US Department of Education’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers. Contact an ARNG POC to discuss details related to program establishment. EXPECTED ROI: An increase in the number of overall high school graduates resulting in a larger pool of qualified non-prior service potential enlistments and a decline in crime and drug use among teens. ARNG end strength has been reached or exceeded in all host communities to date. THE ACTION PLAN: • Brief The Adjutants General • Brief State Executive Leadership (Governor is KEY!) • ARNG-GSE-J and State NG explore program funding opportunities • Assign state NG Program Manager to work with ARNG-GSE-J staff • State NG may contract with service provider for turn-key delivery • Be prepared to provide ARNG guest speakers and/or fitness leadership upon request from local site man¬agers. Volunteer mentoring also opens up conversations with potential recruits.
THE JOB CONNECTION EDUCATION PROGRAM
MARKETING RATIONALE: WHAT: The Job Connection Education Program (JCEP) helps unemployed and under employed National Guard Soldiers achieve their career goals. JCEP also helps to increase National Guard force stability by improving Army National Guard (ARNG) Soldiers’ ability to research, obtain, and retain civilian employment through education and job search skills training. WHEN: JCEP participants are assisted daily through one-on-one program training and career counseling services to connect M-Day Soldiers to available Federal, State and small business job opportunities. WHO: JCEP management is conducted by ARNG Education, Incentives and Employment Division’s Employment and Education Outreach Branch Chief and Program Manager. JCEP staff, Case Managers and Training and Development Specialists, conduct training and counseling services for JCEP participants. JCEP’s target market is underemployed and unemployed ARNG Service members. Employer Partnerships are formed through the JCEP Business Advisor working with state and local agencies. WHERE: JCEP is currently providing relevant and timely workforce training and job-connection assistance to redeploying Texas National Guard Members in two locations; Sandage Armory in Ft. Worth, in support of the 56th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, and Westheimer Armory in Houston, in support of the 72nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team. WHY: Today’s Citizen-Soldiers face a plummeting economy where education alone will not protect, predict, or guarantee job security. The economic downturn coupled with multiple deployments over short time frames has caused the unemployment rate among Guard Members (11.12%) to rise higher and faster than the civilian population’s unemployment rate (9.7%). In July 2010, CNN reported that for 18-24 year-old Veterans, the 2009 unemployment rate was 21.6% compared to 19.1% for their non-veteran counterparts. Underemployment is also another concern for our returning soldiers that JCEP can assist in addressing. The JCEP training process uncovers the
confidence Soldiers may lack in order to properly market themselves, connect with employers, obtain job skill training, and gain civilian employment or start their own business, while serving in the National Guard. The JCEP program is an essential element to supporting and retaining quality Soldiers. While the public/private industry sector can survive without the Reserve Components, the Reserve cannot survive without our public/private industry sector partners. HOW: JCEP specializes in education, training, and job-search services that enhance a National Guard Membersâ€™ abilities to obtain and retain meaningful employment or start their own business in their local community. JCEP matches Guard Members with careers and employers according to their individual talents and skills, providing an exceptional value to local employers. CitizenSoldiers are talented, pre-screened, and fully trained with the employability and occupational skills employers seek. Employers receive many benefits from the opportunity to hire from a skilled labor force, including reduced business recruiting and training costs and in some cases tax credit. When an employer chooses a Citizen-Soldier for an employee, they receive an individual with a strong work ethic, integrity, loyalty, dedication, and resides in the local community. EXPECTED ROI: The long-term program goal of JCEP is to incorporate ALL Guard Members (Army/Air) in each participating State and Territory. In time, the program will expand to include spouses, Family, Wounded Warriors, retirees, and Veterans of all armed forces branches. With JCEP, the National Guard retains quality Guard Members, supports their civilian career planning efforts, and reinforces the Continuum of Service concept. The program strives to be available to all Reserve Component Service Members at the local level.