New workforce development initiatives to provide Memphians career opportunities, economic mobility

What’s happening: University of Memphis has launched two workforce development initiatives in recent weeks, with one providing opportunities in the advanced manufacturing, construction, logistics, transportation, and technology sectors; and the second in the field of behavioral health care for at-risk youth. Each of the programs stand to connect Memphians with careers in high-demand industries and sectors.

First up: Recently announced was the Upskill Mid-South initiative at the Center for Regional Economic Enrichment (CREE) at the University of Memphis. The initiative aims to create opportunities for economic mobility by providing adults and young adults industry-specific training in the advanced manufacturing, construction, logistics, transportation, and technology sectors. The initiative is made possible by a $21.5 million Good Jobs Challenge grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

What they’re saying: “This initiative puts community partnerships at the forefront so that through upskilling our workforce, we can rebuild the region’s economy in ways that promote equity, support communities and create a more sustainable future economy,” says Dr. Richard Irwin, who serves as Executive Dean, UofM Global, the College of Professional & Liberal Studies (CPLS), and the Center for Regional Economic Enrichment.

Click HERE to learn more about the Center for Regional Economic Enrichment and its Upskill Mid-South initiative.

That’s not all: Also announced recently is the Recruiting Interprofessional Scholars for Excellence in Childhood, Adolescence & Young Adulthood (RISE-CAY) program, a collaboration between UofM and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center. The program will train 17 graduate students and residents each year to treat youth affected by adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs. The program is funded by a two-year $1 million grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

Why it’s important: “Our goal in this collaboration is not only to provide support and training, but to encourage the work in child mental health in underserved areas such as Memphis,” says Alicia Barnes, DO, associate director of the Center for Youth Advocacy and Well-Being and an associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UTHSC. “Bringing students and residents from different disciplines together to address youth mental health will strengthen the delivery of care, support school systems and parents, and be a step toward alleviating the shortage of behavioral health professionals in Memphis and the Mid-South.”

Click HERE to learn more about the RISE-CAY program.

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