IL Dept. of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Implements Effective Work-Based Learning Opportunities
The IL Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) has learned a lot about how to implement effective work-based learning opportunities through its WIF-funded Accelerated Training in Manufacturing (ATIM) project. The state is now capitalizing on that learning to help local workforce investment areas across Illinois gear up to fully implement work-based learning as envisioned through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
IL’s Work-Based Learning resource center, housed in the Illinois workNet workforce development web portal, will serve as a clearinghouse for state and local practitioners looking to establish, implement or expand internship, on-the-job training and work experience opportunities in their region. The site was launched in September 2014, and will see additional content added frequently in the coming months including training and webinar information, frequently-asked questions, videos, resources and a subscription service for news and social media on work-based learning.
One of the featured resources on the site is DCEO’s Work-Based Learning Action Planning Template. This grab-and-go tool provides local areas with a step-by-step framework to follow to implement work-based learning, including effectively engaging employers, gauging demand for occupational skills and competencies, developing opportunities, and following the necessary administrative protocols. It is comprehensive to support practitioners new to work-based learning but is structured to allow more experienced professionals to only pull the pieces they need. As a result, the local system has one more tool to help them meet employer and job seeker needs through the proven strategy of work-based learning.