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New career center welcomed to Sunset

The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and the New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS) held a grand opening ceremony at the main lobby of Building B of Brooklyn Army Terminal, 140 58th Street, to announce the opening of the Workforce 1 Industrial and Transportation Career Center (ITC) on Wednesday, May 11.

The center is designed to connect residents with high-quality jobs in the industrial and manufacturing sectors, at such locations as the Brooklyn Army Terminal, Bush Terminal, Industry City, Liberty View Industrial Plaza, South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, among others.

“There is a manufacturing renaissance that’s happening here in Sunset Park,” EDC President Maria Torres-Springer told this paper. “Today represents a real opportunity to make sure that we’re seizing that renaissance in a way that allows us to connect the residents of Sunset to the growing jobs in the area’s industrial and innovation economy.”

This is the first of three new industrial and manufacturing Workforce 1 career centers to open this year. The others will be located in industrial businesses zones in Staten Island and the Bronx. The three new centers will work as satellite branches of the current Workforce 1 ITC in Jamaica, Queens.

The goal of the center, said Torres-Springer is to take an understanding of what the employers in the entire sector need, and work with job seekers to enhance the understanding of what skills and resources they need, “and then make the match.”

“We’re changing the model for how the city creates an effective workforce center by relying on Sunset Park roots to expand the relationships that our local organizations have been creating for the past 10 to 15 years,” added Councilmember Carlos Menchaca.

Currently, the existing Workforce1 Center in Jamaica, Queens serves over 6,000 New Yorkers, nearly 2,000 of whom have been connected to high-quality employment.

“This new Workforce1 Center will be essential in connecting Brooklynites to jobs that offer livable wages, helping to develop skills that can be utilized for years to come,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio in a statement.

“We are embedding these centers close to industrial manufacturing zones, close to the businesses, so we can understand the skill sets that they’re looking for and make those connections to the local residents. The short of it is that what we want to do is connect high quality jobs to the local residents,” SBS Commissioner Gregg Bishop told this paper.

Following the ceremony, there was a tour of employer partner Riva, a jewelry manufacturer at Brooklyn Army Terminal that will be hiring new employees through the center.

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