Education and Training

In our efforts to provide individuals with access to education and training for occupations in growing industries, CPWDC works to continually identify: the needs of workers; the types of programs that are of most value to employers; the industries that offer the greatest opportunities for sustainable employment; and the availability of education and training programs.

The Central PA CareerLink® offices are a valuable resource for individuals with diverse education and training backgrounds and goals, who are seeking opportunities to learn new skills needed to succeed in a competitive job market. Training opportunities may include:

In addition to the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and Department of Human Services funds, CPWDC also actively pursues competitive grants to expand education and training opportunities that respond to the demands of the workforce.

Occupational Skills Training for Unemployed and Employed Workers

Occupational Skills Training programs must provide a certificate of completion and increase an individual’s ability to obtain a job, enter a new career path or receive a promotion that leads to self-sufficiency. Our goal is that Occupational Skills Training will result in full-time employment that pays family sustaining wages and offers health care benefits.

The PA CareerLink® can assist in establishing an Individual Training Account (ITA) for eligible individuals who are in need of Occupational Skills Training in order to become gainfully employed, re-employed or qualify for a better employment situation. An ITA provides funding for an individual to obtain training for occupations in growing industries, as identified on the Central Pennsylvania High Priority Occupations list. While many jobs identified on the list do not require a four year degree, they may require a certificate or credentialing program.

Trainings for High Priority Occupations are provided by a variety of Eligible Training Providers throughout the Region. Locate an Eligible Training Provider near you.

On-the-Job Training (OJT)

On-the-Job Training is designed for individuals who already possess some job-related skills and have been laid off, are making career changes or are re-entering the labor force. An OJT gives the individual an opportunity to acquire new job-specific skills and knowledge, while receiving the same wages and benefits as current employees in the same or similar position.

Although the OJT Program is a job seeker service, the employer benefits by being reimbursed for up to 50 percent of the wage rate of the individual for a contracted period of time. If you are a hiring employer and interested in providing an individual with this unique training opportunity, contact a PA CareerLink® Employer Services Representative to learn more.

Adult Basic Education and GED Classes

Adult Basic Education (ABE) services are designed to help individuals develop basic skills by using real life contextual learning with an emphasis on fundung and keeping family-sustaining employment. General Educational Development (GED) classes prepare individuals for the high school equivalency examination.

Employers that have hired individuals who are struggling with basic skills can access ABE services to develop internal training programs or refer employees to services to increase productivity.

ABE and GED services are provided by PA CareerLink® Partner Agencies.

Job Preparation, Retention and Advancement Skills Workshops

Employers are looking for the most qualified and well-rounded employees. The Central PA CareerLink® can help you fine tune the soft skills that employers are looking for in every employee. Workshops focus on topics that are important to all employers, such as: Appearance, Attendance, Attitude, Communication, Customer Service, Decision Making, Dependability, Diversity, Flexibility, Following Directions, Motivation, Problem Solving, Teamwork and Time Management.

Special Initiative Training Programs

Special Initiative Training Programs, often available for a limited time based on funding, vary in length and scope depending on factors such as the needs of employers, the needs of job seekers, and anticipated growth in emerging industries. View the Special Initiative Training Programs available now at Central PA CareerLink ® offices.

Incumbent Worker Training

Employers often seek resources to assist in training their incumbent workforce on new equipment, technologies or processes or developing their skills in quality, safety, leadership or supervisory competencies. CPWDC has successfully obtained funding through competitive grants to support employers in the Region’s key industries. Currently funding is available through CPWDC for:

If you are an employer and interested in learning more about these training opportunities, contact CPWDC.

For information on WEDnet PA, Pennsylvania’s Guaranteed Free Training program administered by the Department of Community and Economic Development, visit