Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Two Notes on Workforce Training

Two notes this week on workforce training.

One from the White House:

In his 2014 State of the Union address, the President tasked Vice President Biden with leading a review of federal employment and training programs, with the aim of making them more job-driven. That review is complete, and now that the White House has identified what is working across the country, the aim is to multiply those shining examples. The Vice President’s report highlights successful job-driven training strategies, details executive actions that are being taken by the federal government, and new commitments by employers, non-profits, unions and innovators to help spread what’s working and to support more Americans in getting and moving up in in-demand jobs and careers. (Read the full report or fact sheet)

Last Thursday (7/17) the Wall Street Journal published an article by  Lauren Weber, called "Just whose job is it to train workers?"

Amtrak Veterans Job Fair

from the inbox:

In support of an initiative to make 25 percent of new hires veterans by the end of 2015, Amtrak is proud to play host to a Veteran Opportunity Expo at 30th Street Station on Thursday, July 24, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  More than 60 firms, including Amtrak, will have representatives on hand to discuss career opportunities for veterans and other men and women with military backgrounds.

A dedicated team of Amtrak recruiters will be on hand to work with veteran applicants to understand how their military skills, experience and training correspond to career opportunities that best align with their capabilities. 

An Amtrak spokesperson will also be available to discuss the Veterans Hiring Initiative.  Amtrak committed itself to this aggressive goal last year and has hired more than 800 veterans since 2011.  A custom-painted locomotive (Engine #42) was dedicated in June 2013 to honor our employees who are veterans, and raise awareness of the company’s initiative.  Amtrak President & CEO Joe Boardman is himself a veteran of the Vietnam War and cares deeply about providing career opportunities for other veterans. 

The event is produced by the military-to-civilian recruitment firm RecruitMilitary and sponsored by the NorthStar Solutions Group and Disabled American Veterans (DAV). 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Center City Trolley Tunnel Closed

from the inbox:

SEPTA’s Center City trolley tunnel will be closed from 9 p.m. on Friday, August 1 through 4 a.m. on Monday, August 18 for a Trolley Tunnel Blitz.  During the 17-day closure, in-house SEPTA crews will complete numerous overhead wire, track and station improvement projects that will improve safety and service reliability of the trolleys that run through the tunnel. 
During the Trolley Tunnel Blitz, SEPTA trolley routes 10, 11, 13, 34 and 36 will not operate through the tunnel; service will begin and end at 40th and Market Streets.  Passengers can use SEPTA’s Market-Frankford Line for travel to and from Center City.

Cickay Staying in State Senate Race

partial press release:

Candidate for State Senate (SD-10), Steve Cickay, has indicated he is firmly committed to continue his issue-based campaign against an incumbent career politician.  Cickay has assembled a team of grassroots volunteers who are very busy throughout District 10 spreading the word why the status quo is not acceptable and is confident that the traditional old-fashioned voter outreach will take his positive message of change successfully to the voters.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Corporate Personhood and Grammar

I was doing some proofreading this morning and a bit of grammar caught my eye.  Normally inanimate objects are referred to as "that."  For example, this is the tree that fell.  Cars that explode should be banned.  And so on.  People are referred to as "who" or "whom."  Examples:  The candidate who won the election.  The woman who helped me is moving.  Group nouns seem to go either way:  The family that prays together stays together.  The people who lived next door had a pool.  Animals can also go either way.  The dog that bit me.  The cat who came to dinner.

Companies tend to be in the "that" category.  The company that bought them out.   The legal firm that did the work.  But since we have corporate personhood now, and corporations can, via their closely held status, have religious beliefs, will that change?  Will we have to say things like "it was Hobby Lobby who had the sale?"  Will certain corporations start to refer to themselves in that fashion?  "It was our corporation who donated to the charity?"  Not just, "it was our employees who" but "it was the corporation who ...."

Interesting discussion point for the grammar nerds.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Shapiro at White House on Monday

Montgomery County Commissioner Josh Shapiro is in Washington on Monday, July 14th.  He has been invited to be part of a White House discussion on expanding and innovating apprenticeships.  Employers, labor organizations, community colleges, state and local leaders, and workforce development and training organizations are meeting to explore strategies for expanding both the number of apprenticeships and the fields and industries that use apprenticeships.

President Obama's adminstration will be making $100 million available in American Apprenticeship Grants this fall.



Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Krueger-Braneky Opens Campaign Office

Leanne Krueger-Braneky opened a campaign office in Swarthmore on July 4th.  She is the Democratic candidate for the 161st state house district, which includes Aston, Brookhaven, Nether Providence, parts of Ridley Township, Rose Valley, Rutledge, part of Springfield and Swarthmore.

Leanne has advised the White House Business Council on the needs of small businesses.  For eight years, Leanne served as the first Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia (SBN), creating a 500-plus member business organization working to build a just, green, and thriving economy in the Southeast Pennsylvania five-county region.  The SBN was named Regional Economic Development Program of the Year by the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission in 2011.

Biden Unleashed on Philadelphia

from the inbox:

On Wednesday, July 9th, the Vice President will travel to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to deliver remarks at the Grand Banquet of the 42nd Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.

You know what that means - - - a lot of extra traffic, traffic jams, and detoured roads.  Be prepared to have a longer commute tomorrow.

Fed Money for More Medical Residents

from yesterday's inbox:

Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell today announced $83.4 million in Affordable Care Act funding to support primary care residency programs in 60 Teaching Health Centers across the nation. The funding will help train more than 550 residents during the 2014-2015 academic year, increasing the number of residents trained in the previous academic year by more than 200 and helping to increase access to health care in communities across the country.

Created by the Affordable Care Act, the Teaching Health Center Program expands residency training in community-based settings. Residents will be trained in family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, psychiatry, geriatrics, and general dentistry.

Pennsylvania institutions receiving grants:

Cornerstone Care, Inc.
Family Medicine
Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education
Internal Medicine
Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education *
Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education/A.T. Still
Family Medicine
Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education/Wilkes-Barre
Family Medicine

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Veep Here on the 4th

Traffic alert --  Vice President Joe Biden will be in town on the 4th.  You know what that means.  The roads will be busier than usual.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

PCN to Broadcast Events at 151st Anniversary at Gettysburg

from the inbox:

The Pennsylvania Cable Network will provide exclusive televised and online coverage of the 151st anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, beginning Tuesday, July 1, 2014 through Thursday, July 3, 2014.    

The PCN production crew will be on site to record 19 new “Gettysburg Battlewalks,” and “Key Moments,” programs that teach viewers about key historic moments on the battlefield through guided tours by Gettysburg National Military Park rangers and expert historians.      
PCN began exclusive coverage of the commemoration of the Battle of Gettysburg in 1996 and has aired over 200 Gettysburg Battlewalks and Key Moments through the years.    
All Gettysburg programming will be available on the network, online, and on the PCN Select mobile application.  For more information about this year’s exclusive coverage, please visit