Cumberland County nonprofit that partners with school districts on career development is now its own entity

The Partnership for Career Development, which was previously an in-school youth college and career readiness arm of South Central PA Works is now an independent nonprofit organization. The move became official last month.

The Partnership works to build a system of K-12 career development, increases awareness of postsecondary education and training choices, and assists with local workforce development.

The nonprofit is a regional business-education partnership intermediary that says it is dedicated to helping schools align student career interests and abilities with high-interest, high-placement and high-priority occupations.

“Businesses are counting on the K-12 education system to produce more workplace-ready students now,” Lynda Morris, CEO of the Partnership for Career Development said in a press release. “Students require work-readiness skills and career pathway guidance now. Teachers and school counselors need more career-readiness focused training and access to more work-based learning opportunities now. As we relaunch as an independent entity, we recommit ourselves to serving educators, students and businesses, and helping to ensure that every student is empowered and prepared to achieve their career aspirations.”

The Partnership’s programs, events and initiatives for schools, businesses and students include:

  • County-level school consortiums for educators to collaborate and share work-based learning opportunities and best practices to overcome career readiness challenges
  • Student “Career Connections” events for high school students to explore in-demand careers in industries such as healthcare, technology, engineering, manufacturing and logistics
  • “Educator in the Workplace” events that connect educators with on-site business tours and experiences to broaden their knowledge of careers that they can share in the classroom
  • Career exploration expo that showcases businesses, career paths and high-priority occupations to hundreds of students, starting at fourth grade, from school districts throughout the region

The nonprofit provide programs in the areas that include the following school districts: Big Spring School District, Camp Hill School District, Carlisle Area School District, Central Dauphin School District, Cumberland Valley School District, Derry Township School District, East Pennsboro School District, Greenwood School District, Halifax Area School District, Harrisburg School District, Lower Dauphin School District, Mechanicsburg Area School District, Middletown Area School District, Newport School District, Shippensburg Area School District, South Middleton School District, Steelton-Highspire School District, Susquehanna Township School District, Susquenita School District and the West Perry School District.

Programs of the Partnership for Career Development are, in part, funded by grants distributed and supported through the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.

The Partnership for Career Development traces its beginnings to federal legislation – the School to Work Opportunities Act – signed into law more than 25 years ago. The nonprofit is located on the campus of the Capital Area Intermediate Unit at 55 Miller St. in East Pennsboro Township.

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