Category: Blog

WOMAN OF THE YEAR

Reposted from ccoic.org

We are proud to say that this year our very own Joyce Chester, President and CEO of Chester County OIC, has been chosen as Woman of the Year. The recipient of Woman of the Year exemplifies outstanding contributions in the community through exemplary service. Congratulations, Joyce! We couldn’t think of a more worthy leader to receive this honor.

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority hosted their Finer Womanhood: High Tea on Saturday, March 16, 2019. This year’s High Tea was held on the campus of West Chester University at Sykes Student Union 110 W. Rosedale Avenue West Chester, PA 19382 at 12pm. Finer Womanhood is an annual national observance of the Sorority that is celebrated from the last full week in February to the end of March. Every year since 1923 members of Zeta Phi Beta all over the world have annually devoted a special time to identifying and shining a light on women, youth and organizations who express the ideals of the sorority and have used their lives to leave an indelible impression on society 

SOAR & POIC Teams Convene in Portland

by Michael Jackiewicz

Several members of the OICA team had the opportunity to visit Portland OIC and learn more about the work the Portland team is putting into improving their community and specifically how the Portland OIC crew is integrating the SOAR reentry initiative into their service model.

OICA was able to share lessons learned with the POIC SOAR team and in turn, take some promising practices back from Portland to share with other affiliates operating a SOAR program.

CADI: Seeking Dynamic Educators for Immediate Hire

CADI (Career and Academic Development Institute) is seeking dynamic, focused and accomplished educators for immediate hire. Please submit your resume for consideration.

Positions include:

– Special Education Coordinator

– Math Teacher

– Science Teacher

– Computer Teacher

Contact Dr. Pamela Thomas, Principal at pthomas@oicofamerica.org to submit your resume today!

OICA staff attend the Philadelphia Reentry Coalition Housing Resources Showcase

by Letitia Crippen, Program Manager

“Housing continues to be a critical barrier that is difficult to address in for the average American, and even more challenging for those with a blemish on their background.”

Because of rising costs due to gentrification in traditionally low income cities, and unfair housing practices, housing must be a priority to effectively reduce recidivism. OICA will continue to engage with the Philadelphia RC stakeholders to explore ways to better support our participants, not only in Philadelphia, but to share effective strategies with our network of affiliates.”

In February, the OICA program staff attended the Philadelphia Reentry Coalition’s 2019 Winter Stakeholder Meeting at the Office of the District Attorney in Philadelphia.  The meeting was filled with 11 agencies sharing housing resources and ways to address homelessness for the re-entry population. Their Housing Subcommittee worked tirelessly to develop the Navigating Existing Housing Resources Flowchart and Guide; which is a critical tool for our population since navigating housing in a large city can take on the character of an overwhelming labyrinth for anyone regardless of their background.

To access the resources shared click on the link below:
https://www.philadelphiareentrycoalition.org/single-post/2019/02/04/Winter-Quarterly-Stakeholder-Meeting-Recap

OIC DC Affiliate Visit by OICA and JobTrain OIC Leaders and Hope Sullivan during the “National Skills Summit” in DC

National Skills Coalition’s annual fly-in event was open to skills advocates from across the country. The event included two days of federal skills policy updates from experts in the field, a rundown of the Skills for Good Jobs Agenda, a menu of policy recommendations developed by workforce practitioners on the ground, and culminated in the year’s largest advocacy day ever for skills policy on Capitol Hill.

For more information about the summit visit https://www.nationalskillscoalition.org/resources/events/2019-skills-summit

OIC To Help Establish Employee Pipeline To Area Businesses

For Immediate Release:

January 21,2019

Chester County Opportunities Industrialization Center (CC-OIC) has opened in Coatesville and has a mission to train the unemployed and underemployed into long-term employment opportunities. Started by Rev. Leon Sullivan over 55 years ago, to meet the employment needs of disadvantaged individuals, CC-OIC offers workforce training and case management services for everyone, including young adults and adults who have been involved in the criminal justice system.

Continue reading

OICA Explores National Reentry Collaboration

In January, Jason Whyte, Senior Director of Operations and Strategy, visited the Latino Coalition of Community Leadership (LCCL) to learn about the work they are doing to help returning citizens successfully transition back into their communities.  Both national organizations are contracted by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to provide employment-related trainings and supportive services to returning citizens, through the Employment and Training Association (ETA) department’s Reentry Employment Opportunity (REO).

After numerous meetings between Whyte and Richard Morales, Deputy Executive Director (LCCL), over the three-day visit, both organizations discovered that they function with very similar philosophies.  Both organizations employ evidence-based and informed practices with a sober understanding that local adaptation is necessary; no one model is fully transferable to all communities. The organizations are also acutely aware that buy-in and commitment from leadership, a team of talented people, a culture of learning, and proper management of data and performance measurement, are foundational for successful reentry programming. 

Morales introduced Whyte to associates and partners of LCCL, such as Christie Donner, Executive Director of Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition (CCJRC); Johanna Leal, Principal Consultant with the Alliance for Criminal Justice Innovation (ACJI); Leo Alirez, Executive Director of Lifeline; and Hassan Latif, Executive Director of the Second Chance Center. Together, these players are working to slash recidivism in Denver, Colorado.  

OICA and LCCL will continue to discuss creative and innovative ways both national organizations can partner to tackle this national problem. 

Photo Caption: From Left to Right: Richard Morales, Deputy Executive Director (LCCL); Christie Donner, Executive Director (CCJRC); Jason Whyte, Senior Director of Operations and Strategy (OICA)

Louis King, CEO of Summit Academy OIC featured on “Think Tank” CBS affiliate podcast

Recently, our very own Louis King, CEO of Summit Academy OIC was a guest on a CBS affiliate podcast in Minneapolis, MN. discussing Summit’s efforts to get low income people and people of color into STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) jobs.  This conversation resulted from Summit’s success with its first IT class where 17 of 19 graduates got jobs paying $17.00/hr. after also having a Paid Internships at $12.50/hr.

Summit’s next venture is to offer STEM exposure to kids as young as pre-school.  STEM starts to help kids at any age develop effective problem-solving techniques and helps set them on a path of lifelong learning and an appreciation for math and science.

They also have plans for a Gaming League and are launching a company, “STEM NATION”, which will allow for potential replication across the country.  The podcast introduced Summit Academy OIC to a broad and diverse audience, while also connecting them to industry insiders in the Mid-west Region of the country.  The discussion is certainly worth a listen as we continue to consider how to position OIC as a leader in workforce development.  Summit’s STEM strategy seems viable regardless of the size or location of the affiliate.  “We see no Alps.”

Click link below to listen!

https://omny.fm/shows/synapse/synapse-think-tank-of-the-air-episode-25-1-4-19

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OIC is a national 501(c)(3) non-profit organization preparing people for today's workforce with quality life skills development, fundamental education, superior job skills training, and employment readiness services.

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