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The Main Line Chamber of Commerce's Talent and Education Network (TEN) has won a $75,000 grant

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Posted by: Bernie Dagenais on Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 11:00:00 am

Chamber secures national talent grant

 The Main Line Chamber of Commerce’s Talent and Education Network (TEN) has won a $75,000 grant from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to develop strategies to help younger workers more effectively meet the talent needs of employers.

The grant through the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s Center for Education and Workforce is one of five being distributed to cutting-edge programs from throughout the country.

“Our Talent and Education Network – TEN for short – is an employer-led collaborative designed to help meet workforce talent needs as baby boomers retire,” said Bernard Dagenais, President and CEO of The Main Line Chamber of Commerce. “While there can be obstacles for some companies seeking to build a stronger entry-level pipeline of employees, it is essential to our companies and our region’s economy that we get this right.”

TEN offers employers services to help expand their internship programs, while spurring dialogue about the work that colleges and universities are doing to prepare students for the work force. For companies participating in the program, the chamber provides consulting services that include candidate screening and professional development programs for participating students.

The grant was announced Tuesday at a Technology Jobs Summit the Chamber hosted at Cabrini College. The event drew business and academic leaders who strategized specifically on ways to reduce the technology skills gap that employers face as they strive to hire the help they need to thrive.

“It’s critical that the business community plays a leading role in developing programs that meet the needs of industry and support young people in acquiring the skills needed in the marketplace,” said Cheryl Oldham, vice president of the USCCF Center for Education and Workforce.

The USCCF’s youth employment initiative is focused on closing the skills gap by developing customized ways for the private sector to develop young talent as part of its overall business strategy. State and local chambers of commerce were selected as partners because they are uniquely positioned to work effectively with their local employers to help address this national problem.

“Currently, more than 5 million jobs are going unfilled across the country due to the lack of necessary skills in the labor market,” said Oldham. “Our nation’s competitiveness will be determined by the strength of our future workforce and how well we are preparing young adults. “  

The Main Line Chamber of Commerce is part of a youth employment network that will implement employer-driven, work-based learning and employment strategies targeted at 16 to 24 year-old youth and young adults. 

The selected chambers are the California Chamber of Commerce, the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, the Main Line Chamber of Commerce, the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and the Virginia Chamber of Commerce.

Supporters of the initiative in Greater Philadelphia include Vertex, U.S. Liability Insurance Group, LiquidHub, Vanguard Group, Alliance Global Services, Enterprise Holdings, Accenture, Lincoln Financial Group, Medecision, Bentley Systems, SolomonEdwards Group, Independence Blue Cross, TD Bank, Wells Fargo, Year Up Philadelphia, Campus Philly the Urban League of Philadelphia, PACT , Pep Boys, State Farm, Gregory FCA, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and talent consulting firm Yoh.

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