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IUP Hosts WEDnetPA Professional Development Conference

Participants at the WEDnetPA Professional Development ConferenceFifty participants from colleges, universities and technical schools across Pennsylvania attended the annual WEDnetPA Professional Development Conference hosted by IUP on April 24–26, 2013.

WEDnetPA is the Workforce and Economic Development Network of Pennsylvania. It was created to help make companies across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania more competitive by updating and improving the skills of their employees to meet specific company needs.

Three breakout sessions that participants could choose between were included in the program Wednesday and Thursday.

Tom Venditti, WEDnetPA statewide director, presented “An Epic Voyage,” providing an understanding of the origins and history of WEDnetPA and the role the organization plays in the universe of workforce development.

WEDnetPA partners Heather Baldwin (Penn College), Wendy Kopczyk (IUP), and C.J. Ezell (Shippensburg University) presented “Messages from the Gods.” This interactive session offered suggestions on how one can improve everything from funding decisions to customer service to invoicing.

Mandy Book, an economic development consultant at Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, and KayLynn Hamilton, workforce development liaison at the Institute for the Study of Adult Literacy at Penn State University, presented “How Can I Help You?” In this session, participants learned about a wide array of state economic and workforce development incentives that can help their companies grow and succeed.

Participants toured the IUP campus Thursday afternoon, followed by a presentation by Edward Legge, division chief of the Center for Workforce Information and Analysis of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.

“We were very happy to host individuals from across the state who have made economic development and employee training a priority,” Eberly assistant dean Cyndy Strittmatter said. “We look forward to continued collaboration in workforce development efforts.”

A dinner at Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex concluded Thursday’s session of the conference. Rich Hudic, executive deputy secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, was the keynote speaker.

Abbey Zelko

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