State Awards JVS Boston $10M to get Thousands of Mass Residents Back to Work

Initiative will provide job training, education, and resources for those most hurt by COVID pandemic


BOSTON, Mass.— Working to improve the lives of those most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has awarded $10 million to JVS Boston to implement a rapid reemployment strategy that will enhance and expand its adult education and workforce development services to help thousands of state residents reenter the workforce. 

Using its “Rapid Re-Employment” model, JVS will use the funds to provide job training, job readiness and placement, and English for Advancement programs, augmented by supports that address key obstacles preventing people from entering the workforce: transportation, housing, food security, Internet access and devices, and childcare.  

“We are very thankful to the Legislature and to Governor Baker and his administration – particularly the Department of Labor and Workforce Development – for this funding and their confidence in our ability to deliver these critically important services,” said Amy Nishman, Sr. Vice President of Strategy for JVS.

“We know that the pandemic has had devastating effects on countless workers, particularly women, immigrants, and low-income workers, who were already dealing with a pre-pandemic economy rife with racial and economic inequities. It is deeply encouraging that our leaders are supporting all that the workforce development community is doing to build a sustainable economic future for families across the state,” Nishman added.

“The Baker-Polito Administration is committed to a regional and targeted strategy that supports the unemployed and underemployed, as well as employers with growing hiring needs,” said Rosalin Acosta, Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development. “JVS has been a valued partner in these efforts, and we look forward to continuing our collaboration that helps economically-disadvantaged people find meaningful work, especially those who were most impacted by the pandemic.” 

“The Legislature is focused on directing the Commonwealth’s investments in workforce services to programs overseen by organizations like JVS that have demonstrated great success in supporting those individuals struggling to get back into the workforce,” said House Ways and Means Chairman Aaron Michlewitz (D-Boston).

The experience JVS gained from its 2016-17 Pay for Success workforce development program will be the foundation for implementing successful interventions. The Pay for Success program, the first in the world to focus exclusively on workforce development, enabled JVS to scale its programs to help almost 2,000 immigrants throughout Greater Boston improve their English and find higher-wage jobs.

“We have proven results that our interventions can move workers into and up in the labor market,” said Nishman. “Based on the positive results of the Pay for Success project, we are excited to implement our Rapid Reemployment strategy, focused on job training, job placement, and support.”

Using the agency’s individualized approach, JVS will direct participants to their most promising pathway–for some, job training, for others, ESOL courses, for others, direct job placement. Through its long-term partnerships with employers, JVS connects individuals to quality jobs that offer   an ideal fit and have the potential to lead to meaningful careers.

“This funding comes when hospitals are facing some very serious challenges, with the current workforce shortage at the top of the list,” said MJ Ryan Senior Director Workforce Development & Economic Opportunity, Human Resources of Mass General Brigham. “The support that JVS provides us to strengthen our talent pipeline is critical to providing the quality of care that every patient expects. We know that those trained by JVS will have the skills and credentials to hit the ground running, and we are grateful to the administration and the Legislature for supporting such important work.”    

JVS’s training programs, which range from four weeks to four months, are targeted to several key industries including: healthcare, the trades, biomanufacturing, and banking.

“Our partnership with JVS over the past 15 years, has resulted in dozens of highly-qualified and motivated certified pharmacy technicians for our pharmacies,” said Rick Laferriere of CVS Health. “The need for pharmacy technicians, who are so critical to meeting the healthcare needs of our communities, remains strong. We are excited to see that JVS will have the resources to extend and grow this proven, successful training program.” 




About JVS Boston

Jewish Vocational Service (JVS) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonsectarian organization founded in 1938. JVS serves more than 16,000 individuals annually and is one of the largest community-based providers of adult education and workforce development services in New England. JVS’s mission is to empower individuals from diverse communities to find employment and build careers, while partnering with employers to hire, develop, and retain productive workforces. In support of this mission, JVS provides a wide range of adult education, vocational training, job readiness, career counseling, and job placement services, as well as related supportive services.

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