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Shenandoah Valley Partnership Announces New Database

HARRISONBURG, January 25, 2013-The Shenandoah Valley Partnership is excited to announce the unveiling of a new training database, the Shenandoah Valley Education and Training Database.  The database, hosted on the Partnership’s web site, will list training and educational programs available from Valley colleges, universities and technical schools.

A result of the Partnership’s Education and Workforce Committee and spearheaded in development by Dr. Bob Young of Blue Ridge Community College, this database will function as a tool for education and business in the Valley to collaboratively produce results.

“Employers consistently report frustration that they are not aware of the wide range of education and training available at the many technical centers, schools and institutions of higher education in the Valley.  This initiative provides employers with a single website for easy access to an interactive, searchable database which provides them with information about training programs in high demand fields,” commented John Downey, President of Blue Ridge Community College and Chairman of the Partnership’s Education and Workforce Committee.

Not only will employers benefit from the comprehensive database, Valley citizens looking to broaden their skills and colleges looking to share their program availability will be able to use the database to their advantage as well.

Robin Sullenberger, CEO of the Partnership, said “In today’s highly automated and technology driven business climate, access to a skilled workforce often determines success or failure.  Valley businesses and citizens will be able to access valuable, relevant information in a timely manner from a user friendly format.”

Valley business R.R. Donnelly sees the potential.  “This new database has tremendous potential to significantly help employers address workforce training needs in the Shenandoah Valley.  Employers are often unaware of what specific training programs are offered by education providers.  Now, employers can go to one web based resource to find which training providers offer specific programs in particular workforce training skill areas,” said Gary Calleo, Plant Manager of R.R. Donnelley.

“Our employees are really the only sustainable competitive advantage we have.  That means it is critical for us to maintain their skillsets at high contemporary levels.  Doing so requires us to seek new training and education programs on a frequent basis.  Having a means to access well-structured information on the types of programs that are available to us throughout the region is invaluable.  We are very pleased that the Shenandoah Valley Partnership and Blue Ridge Community College have worked in a collaborative fashion with a wide array of resource providers to develop the Education and Training Database that was recently introduced,” noted Neal Menefee, President and CEO of Rockingham Group.

The Shenandoah Valley Partnership provides marketing services, site location assistance and support to existing businesses in the Central Shenandoah Valley.  The Partnership serves the counties of Augusta, Bath, Highland, Page, Rockbridge, Rockingham and Shenandoah, and the cities of Buena Vista, Harrisonburg, Lexington, Staunton and Waynesboro.

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