CWI Labs Digital Certification Program
CWI Labs is confronting the systemic inequities related to age, gender, and race by developing solutions that address the needs of the job seekers and the skill requirements of local economies. One of the cornerstones of our current work is addressing the bias related to age and technology – that older job seeker doesn’t know and/or are unable to learn the technology of today. A recent study by the National Skills Coalition shows that across all industries 92% of jobs now require digital skills
We are directly confronting this myth with a unique program to train and certify that our job seekers are digitally literate for a remote and hybrid workplace through our Digital Certification Program (DCP). DCP is a one-of-its-kind training program with a curriculum that goes beyond technology platforms to train on the soft skills unique to a remote and hybrid workplace. DCP simultaneously combats ageism by directly refuting two myths holding older workers back from equitable economic opportunity – that they are not digitally savvy and that they do not want to learn digital skills.
A test of concept for the DCP program was conducted with unemployed and underemployed older residents of Allentown, Pennsylvania in 2021. Nearly 7 out of 10 (66%) of clients found long-term, sustained employment. The certification of completion that the program provided assisted job seekers in securing employment as administrative assistants, customer service representatives and schedulers. Fifty-five (55%) are employed by small businesses, 25% with nonprofit organizations and 20% with larger organizations.