FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Tiffany Vause, Director of Strategic Initiatives

Phone850-766-4646

Emailtvause@winlearning.com

WIN Learning Paves Career Pathways for Justice-Involved Jobseekers

New initiative counters commercial truck driver and other skilled labor shortages

Kingston, Tennessee – 3/28/2022 – Countering current labor shortages, an innovative correctional career readiness initiative in Florida, powered by WIN Learning, is paving pre-release pathways to employment for soon-to-be-returning citizens while providing ready to work new hires for Florida employers. In partnership with Florida HIRES (Helping Inmates Realize Employment Success), WIN Learning is leading a coalition of public and private partners to prepare incarcerated individuals within 180 days of release from the Florida Department of Corrections with essential soft skills and technical skills training, including commercial truck driving.

                

Those who complete the Florida HIRES CDL program earn a Class B commercial driver license, allowing operation of commercial box trucks, concrete mixers and sanitation vehicles. While there is no guarantee of employment, 100 percent of Florida HIRES CDL graduates have received job offers while incarcerated and completing their sentence.

                

Florida HIRES also provides core construction, heavy equipment operation, electrical, advanced manufacturing, warehousing and logistics, and customer service / hospitality training. Participants receive intensive employability training and earn the Florida Soft Skills Credential, a stackable credential validating mastery of the communication, professionalism, teamwork, critical thinking and problem-solving skills most in-demand by employers across industry sectors.

                

“It takes innovative thinking and collaboration to create win-win opportunities for jobseekers and employers. The WIN Learning suite of digital career readiness solutions are the foundational first step toward technical training, on-the-job training, apprenticeship, and ultimately employment success,” said Teresa Chasteen, CEO of WIN Learning. “There is nothing more empowering for those who are returning from incarceration to their families and the community than meaningful and sustainable employment.”

                

According to the American Trucking Association, the United States has a current shortage of more than 80,000 commercial truck drivers. With 72 percent of all consumer goods moved by trucks, this shortage impacts all Americans.

                

Florida HIRES employer partner Argos-US is among many businesses – large and small – grappling with a convergence of current employees nearing retirement and new hire recruiting.

                

“We are looking for new drivers who are willing to stay and learn more about our company so that we can grow together,” said Argos-US Florida Regional Human Resources Manager Monique Wallace. “But like many companies, we are facing workforce shortages. To date, we have hired eight candidates and could not be more pleased.”

                

WIN Learning, in collaboration with Florida HIRES, is closing America’s talent gap by launching justice-involved jobseekers into life-long careers. Nearly 400 participants have now completed the program. Of those who have been released, at least two-thirds are currently employed.

                

“Most inmates in our custody will one day be released, and while they are in our custody there is a tremendous benefit for inmates, staff, and communities when good vocational learning opportunities are made available. We are pleased this program has continued down a path of success,” said Ricky Dixon, Secretary of the Florida Department of Corrections (FDC). “It is positive for inmates and their families, and for employers who need qualified individuals to step into these in-demand roles.”  


                

About WIN Learning

Since 1996, WIN has become the leading provider of career readiness solutions to help business, industry, workforce, and districts prepare pathways for students’ and job seekers’ futures, whether they are college, trade school, military, or workplace bound. To date, more than 10 million students worldwide have participated in the specialized career-driven courseware and education intervention initiatives as well as career-readiness certification programs. For more information, go to www.winlearning.com or call 888-717-9461.  


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