With a labor force approaching 200,000 people, our active economic and industrial development corporation is always identifying new opportunities for local employers and employees. The Westmoreland County Commissioners, through its Department of Planning & Development, in concert with the Westmoreland County Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), the Redevelopment Authority of the County of Westmoreland (RACW) and the Economic Growth Connection of Westmoreland (EGC), have combined the resources and expertise of these private and public agencies in an effort to improve and coordinate economic development efforts in the county. In conjunction with the Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce and other local chambers in the county, these groups work to make Westmoreland County a more attractive place to do business.
The Westmoreland/Fayette Workforce Investment Board (WIB), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, leads workforce development activities in the area to help individuals attain the skills necessary for viable employment, and to help employers become competitive in the global economy. The WIB provides assistance to businesses and job seekers through internet resources, contacts, and local career centers. PA CareerLink, as the career centers are known in Pennsylvania, offer a wide range of services to employed, as well as unemployed, adults who are seeking a job or job training. PA CareerLink also provides services for businesses that are seeking new employees, or training for current employees.
The Private Industry Council of Westmoreland/Fayette, an operating partner of PA CareerLink, operates employment, education, and training programs in addition to workforce development services including skills assessments, government procurement assistance, and customized job training. The Private Industry Council also operates the Education and Technology Institute which offers licensed and accredited educational programs and customized training, adult basic education/remediation classes, GED testing and test preparation classes, programs for educational expansion, and career skills training/re-training.
Saint Vincent College Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provides entrepreneurs with the education, information and tools necessary to build successful businesses. Consulting services and educational programs are provided to individuals interested in starting or growing a business in Westmoreland and Fayette counties. All industry sectors can benefit from resources provided by the SBDC.
Forum for Workforce Development
As a founding partner of the Westmoreland County Forum for Workforce Development, the Chamber works closely with business-education representatives and has been meeting regularly with the Superintendents of the 17 School Districts within Westmoreland County. The goal of the forum is to provide a better understanding of regional quality workforce needs of business and industry and how improved communication and collaboration can be cultivated and developed between education and business entities to address the needs of the new economy.