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A publication by the Arkansas Department of Career Education.

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Published by AR Career Ed, 2017-09-06 11:26:04

JobReady: September 2017 Issue

A publication by the Arkansas Department of Career Education.



A Publication of the Arkansas Department of Career Education

Arkansas ranked #1

in disability employment

On the cover Table of Contents

Sandi Wright, a 2017 Arkansas
Children's Hospital Project SEARCH ®
graduate, is a Patient Care Technician Around the State
for the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Arkansas ranked Check out what the
Unit at Arkansas Children's Hospital. 4 #1 in disability 6
The ACH Project SEARCH site Department of Career
was developed in full partnership employment Education has been up
between ACH, ACCESS Group, Inc. to around the state.
and ARS. It is a nine-month innovative
job training program for young adults
with disabilities.
More about Arkansas ranking #1 in
7 Engagement 8 Lt. Gov. Griffin touts
disability employment on Page 4-5. Business


September 2017 collaboration

A public information publication
Charisse Childers, Ph.D. 9 Arkansas ACTE 10 companies at
of the Arkansas Department of Job seekers
Career Education.
connect with
takes over Hot

Communications Department Springs Career Expo
Dustin Barnes
Susan King
Chip McAfee
Caty Sample
Ellice Scales Upcoming Events
[email protected]

Arkansas Department of Sept. 4, 2017 Sept. 12, 2017
Career Education Labor Day Career Education and
Three Capitol Mall In observance of Labor Workforce Development
Little Rock, Arkansas 72201 Day, all state offices will be Board Meeting
501-682-1500 closed. 525 W. Capitol Ave.
501-682-1509 fax Little Rock, AR 72201
1:30 p.m.

Sept. 21, 2017 Sept. 27, 2017

State Rehabilitation Council Arkansas Kidney Disease
(SRC) Commission (AKDC
525 W. Capitol Ave. Board)

Adult Education Little Rock, AR 72201 525 W. Capitol Ave.
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services 10:00 a.m. Little Rock, AR 72201
Career & Technical Education 12:00 p.m.
Office of Skills Development

Commissioner's Update
Around the am pleased to be able to say that

Agency I the number one state for disability
Arkansas has recently been ranked

OSD welcomes employment by U.S. News & World D. Alan McClain
Report. Every day the team at Arkansas
new Deputy Rehabilitation Services works diligently
to serve our clients. This dedication to
Director the people we serve and to the goal of clients and the contribution they make to
helping them go to work is evident in our
ody Waits has been outcomes. I am very proud of all of our the state’s workforce.
selected Deputy accomplishments and to have Arkansas We don’t do this work for accolades,
CDirector of the Office ranked as the top state is a testament to but it is nice to see our efforts are
making a difference in the lives of
of Skills Development. He everything we do. Arkansans.
We are fortunate to have many
assumed this role in July. providers and other state agency The ARS Business Engagement
partners here in the state who are Team along with Access &
dedicated to helping those Arkansans Accommodations Division stands
with disabilities received the necessary ready to partner with business and
training and supports to go to work. This industry throughout the state to promote
collaborative effort is critical to building hiring and retention of individuals
upon this success. with disabilities. I encourage anybody
Of course, this achievement would needing more information about ARS
not be possible without also having resources to contact me at 501-296-
the support of the many Arkansas 1616, or email me at [email protected]
businesses that see the abilities of our
From the Board: Program Spotlight: Arkansas Rehabilitation Services

Board Welcomes
With 19 offices statewide,
Newest Memeber he mission of Arkansas ARS has counselors who serve
Rehabilitation Services

teve Percival is the T(ARS) Division is to each of the state's 75 counties.
newest member of the empower clients to become Counselors work out of regional
SCareer Education & employed. Earning a living is offices and travel to specific
Workforce Development Board. a basic right and is valuable locations in the counties they
Percival is the Senior Project for both the individual and serve on a regular schedule to
Manger for the Partnership the community. A person with assure better accessibility of our
for a Healthy Arkansas and a disability faces barriers in services.
a Managing Director with various life activities that include Arkansans with disabilities
Grandslam Performance the opportunities to train for, may also qualify to attend the
Associates. Percival replaces locate, and/or keep a job. Arkansas Career Training
Michael Lindsey, whose term The Arkansas Rehabilitation Institute (ACTI), which is
expired in June. Services Division helps one of eight comprehensive
individuals overcome vocational rehabilitation
those obsacles by focusing centers in the United States.
on ABILITY rather than Students are referred to the Hot
DISABILITY. It is good business Springs facility for evaluation
for everyone. For every dollar and placement by vocational
spent in Arkansas on Vocational rehabilitation counselors. Once
Rehabilitation, roughly seven enrolled, students have access
dollars is returned to the state's to vocational training and
economy. medical services.


Arkansas ranked #1 in disability employment

.S. News & World Report range of abilities, talents, and skills
has identified Arkansas as that help strengthen our state’s
Uthe top state for people with workforce. It is very encouraging to
disabilities to become employed. see our state agencies, disability
The publication compiled the service providers, and employers
ranking by calculating the ratio working together to have such a
of people in the workforce with significant impact,” Hutchinson
a disability over people in the said.
workforce without a disability. “We are proud of this
The distinction follows the 27th distinction,” said Alan McClain,
anniversary of the passage of the Commissioner of Arkansas
Americans with Disabilities Act, Rehabilitation Services. “This
created to eliminate discrimination is a result of the hard work from
and to foster equal opportunity our entire ARS team, along
for people with disabilities in with dedicated disability service
every aspect of life. The law providers throughout the state,
outright prohibits discrimination who have made it their mission to
in employment, state and see that individuals with disabilities
local government services, find employment. Additionally, this
public accommodations, and reflects that Arkansas employers
transportation. recognize the value that individuals
Arkansas Rehabilitation of many different abilities bring to a Aubrey Wilhite, a 2017 UAMS Project
Services (ARS), a division of productive and skilled workforce,” SEARCH graduate, is employed at
the Arkansas Department of he added. Popeyes.
Career Education, is charged
with preparing Arkansans with
disabilities to work and lead
independent lives. With 19 field
offices throughout the state, the
agency provides Arkansans with
disabilities with assessments,
career planning, and job placement
opportunities so clients can
care for themselves and their
families. The Arkansas Career
Training Institute, located in Hot
Springs, is a 24-hour rehabilitation
center where students receive
vocational training and certification
in programs like welding,
cosmetology, and culinary arts. Tony Vittitow, a 2017 UAMS Project
"I am very proud to see SEARCH graduate, is employed at
Arkansas take the top spot in Dillard's Distribution Center. The UAMS Will Lowry, a graduate of ACTI's Culinary
this report,” said Governor Asa Project SEARCH site was developed in Arts program, is now an Executive Chef
for Little Red Restaurant in Fairfield
full partnership between UAMS, ACCESS
Hutchinson. “This is a result of a Group, Inc., and ARS, a division of the Bay. Arkansas Career Training Institute
concentrated effort by the state to Arkansas Department of Career Education. (ACTI) provides vocational training and
employ Arkansans with a broad- It is a nine-month innovative job training employment opportunities to adult clients
program for young adults with disabilities. with disabilities.


Arkansas ranked #1 in disability employment

Caitlynn Simpson, a 2017 UAMS Project
SEARCH graduate, is employed at
ACCESS School.

Former ARS Client Brent Dvorak is an Utility Clerk for Sedexo at CHI St. Vincent
Nutritional Services.

William Stevens, a 2017 UAMS Project
SEARCH graduate, is employed at the
Arkansas Department of Career Education.

Matthew Prickett, a 2017 UAMS Project SEARCH graduate, works at Edward's Food
Giant. The UAMS Project SEARCH site was developed in full partnership between
UAMS, ACCESS Group, Inc., and ARS, a division of the Arkansas Department of Career
Education. It is a nine-month innovative job training program for young adults with Former ARS Client Iris Moore is employed
disabilities. at the Salvation Army.


Greenwood Little Rock

Greenwood High School is offering
drone classes for the first time. ARCareerEd Assistant
Communications Director Chip McAfee
Little Rock There are many career options for was on Power 92 Jams with Broadway
drone operators and due to the Joe talking about the Career Expo
skill necessary to build a drone sponsored by the agency.
there is a heightened interest
in STEM (Science, Technology,
Engineering, and Mathematics) Hot Springs
programs. To read more: http://

Little Rock

CVS Health partnered with the
Arkansas Career Training Institute
Career Education and Workforce and seven other Comprehensive
Development Board Member Vocational Rehabilitation Centers to
Keith Vire receives the first ever develop and provide retail training
and establish a talent pipeline for their
Service Recognition Award from pharmacies.
the Arkansas Waiver Association This program has three primary
(AWA). The Service Recognition components: one week of
Award is an award created to comprehensive retail sales and
honor Dr. Vire for his many years corporate culture training, two weeks
of service fighting for the rights of Arkansas Rehabilitation Services of hands-on learning at a mock store
people with disabilities. The AWA Commissioner Alan McClain was (located on the ACTI campus and
is an association of advocates, on KARN News Radio to answer furnished by CVS Health), followed by
persons with developmental questions regarding the agency a 6-week externship with CVS at one
disabilities, their families and the and to announce how Arkansas of their locations in the state.
Initial classes will have six students
professionals who work in the field. ranked number one by U.S. News per class, but there are plans to
Their mission is to promote quality, & World Reports for people with expand this in the future.
integrated supports. disabilities to become employed. Training will begin in early September.


Business Engagement through collaboration

o foster increased “The CIP is a good tool for
collaboration between the business engagement and VR
TARS’ Business Engagement counselors to align around the
(BE) team and Field Services, client,” Pottenger said. “It gives us a
Business Engagement Manager more realistic view of what to expect
Rodney Chandler and Chief of Field from a chosen occupation, breaking
Services Carl Daughtery planned a it down into percentages and detail.”
joint meeting. The joint Business
Chandler and Daughtery invited Engagement staff meeting promoted
a group of Vocational Rehabilitation open dialogue between ARS’
(VR) Counselors to the Business VR counselors and Business
Engagement monthly staff meeting Engagement staff. “We are looking
to share ideas, provide feedback and forward to increased collaboration
discuss ways to expand use of Labor and the sharing of labor market Jeanne Miller of UA Currents: “We
Market Information (LMI) to increase information to influence the future of want to do what makes good business
client outcomes along with meeting job training and meeting employer sense.”
the needs of businesses. needs,” Chandler said.
LMI is data that represents
the current job market and projected
skills needed for in-demand
jobs. The collaborative approach
between VR counselors and BE
representatives relies on LMI to help
VR clients plan a career pathway
based on employer demand in his/
her geographical area.
Though the O*Net is the typical
LMI tool in use now, a new LMI
resource called the Career Plus
Index ( is
a VR counselor-driven tool designed Paula Pottenger discusses the VR counselor Lisa Wilson (Conway)
to provide detailed information Career Plus Index as a tool for BE and cites the need to measure employer
on various occupations. The CPI VR to align around the client. engagement of CRPs.
was discussed as a more detailed
resource for informing the client,
developing a stronger IEP, choosing
training, and securing employment.
Paula Pottenger, University
of Arkansas Organizational
Development Specialist, introduced
the Career Plus Index as the only
major national job aggregator that
allows searches by O*Net code.
The CIP has advanced features to
support counselor casework and
synthesizes “real time job listings”
from state job banks, all major
job boards, regional and local job BER Stephanie Bennet (Hot Springs) VR Counselor Keondra Hampton
boards, and corporate web sites. suggests a CPI tab for interpreter and BER Clara Taylor share clients in
services. the NLR/Lonoke office.


Lt. Gov. Griffin touts STEM

As seen in The Hot Springs Sentinel- the state's workers. He stressed
Record written by Jay Bell. the positive benefits of starting
students on career paths in middle
t. Gov. Tim Griffin endorsed school or high school instead of
the principles of career and waiting until after they graduate.
Ltechnical education Tuesday Workforce capabilities is a
to state educators and promoted factor companies consider when
the Million Women Mentors they decide where to locate.
effort to encourage more female Griffin said the state works with
students to pursue careers in companies to fill their employer
the fields of science, technology, needs as they weigh other factors,
engineering and mathematics. such as regulations and tax
The Arkansas Association for policies. The Sentinel-Record/Richard Rasmussen
Career and Technical Education Griffin said he focuses more STEPS FOR STEM: Arkansas Lt. Gov. Tim
Griffin discussed the importance of STEM
held its 87th annual Summer on the areas of STEM education education and the Million Women Mentors
Conference Sunday through instead of the levels of attainment. movement Tuesday in Horner Hall as the
Tuesday [July 30-August 1] at the He said workers can find high- keynote speaker for the closing session of
Hot Springs Convention Center. paying careers in STEM fields the Arkansas Association for Career and
Technical Education 87th annual Summer
The event was sponsored by the with a variety of certifications and Conference at the Hot Springs Convention
Arkansas Department of Career diplomas. Center.
Education, as well as Edmentum "I am all for education, but we
and the Innovative Strategies have got to recognize -- and we
Group. are doing a better job, I think, of Griffin spoke almost a year
Meetings began on Sunday this -- that it's not one-size-fits-all ago at National Park College for
and sessions were held throughout for education," Griffin said. "Some the local launch of the Million
the day on Monday. Another round people want to go to a four-year Women Mentors, an initiative of
of meetings was held Tuesday college, some people need to go STEMconnector in collaboration
morning before the closing session to a four-year college and some with more than 60 partners, 45
in Horner Hall. people don't." corporate sponsors and 35 state
Griffin was invited to the About 45 percent of male high leadership teams. Organizers are
conference as the keynote speaker school graduates indicate they working to reach more than 30
for the closing session. He was have interest in STEM careers. million girls and women to increase
elected in 2014 after serving for Less than 15 percent of female the percentage of young women
four years in the U.S. House of graduates indicate interests in who pursue STEM education,
Representatives for Arkansas' 2nd STEM. programs and careers.
Congressional District. Griffin said the matter is a Wal-Mart previously pledged
"Thank you for what you do," national issue and not limited to to work with 5,000 mentees in
Griffin said. "You are so critical to Arkansas. He said an emphasis Arkansas by 2018. One million
what is going on in this state right must be placed on attracting young male and female mentors are
now." female students to STEM fields. being sought to connect with
Griffin said career and "It is a much easier lift if you female students.
technical educators have always start early and you hit young A 52-week curriculum was
been important, but their role is people who are driving their own developed to prepare mentors.
even more crucial now as the passion, instead of you trying to Registration is available online at
state works to attract companies convince somebody my age to get https://www.millionwomenmentors.
to Arkansas and provide jobs for interested in STEM," Griffin said. com/.


Arkansas ACTE takes over Hot Springs

areer and Technical Education
teachers and professionals from
Call across the state descended
on Hot Springs for the 87th Annual
ACTE Conference. This year’s
theme was “All Systems Go: Real
Partners, Real Plans, Real Progress.”
Conference participants celebrated
the growing role that CTE is playing
in preparing students for opportunities
with business and industry leaders.
“ARCareerEd is proud to
have outstanding educators to be Arkansas State Senator Jane Arkansas State Representative Dan
recognized by ACTE," Deputy Director English (District 34-North Little Rock) Douglas (District 91-Bentonville) is
of Career and Technical Education is presented with the Policy Maker of presented with the Policy Maker of
Kathi Turner said. "Congratulations to the Year Award by Arkansas ACTE the Year Award by Arkansas ACTE
winners and good luck as you move to President Starlinda Sanders. President Starlinda Sanders.
the next round of competition!”
Below are the honorees who were
recognized for their contributions to
expanding and improving CTE. Not
pictured are Jim Hendren, Policy
Maker of the Year; Uvalde Lindsey,
Policy Maker of the Year; and Justin
Neel, New Teacher of the Year.

Micelle Camp is presented with the
Teacher Educator of the Year Award Carolyn McNeely is presented
by Arkansas ACTE President Starlinda with the Career Guidance Award by
Sanders. Arkansas ACTE President Starlinda

Sherry Siler is presented with the Linda Bean is presented with the Starlinda Sanders is presented with
Carl Perkins Community Service Post-Secondary Teacher of the Year the Administrator of the Year Award by
Award by Arkansas ACTE President Award by Arkansas ACTE President Ross White, former Arkansas ACTE
Starlinda Sanders. Starlinda Sanders. President.


Job seekers connect with companies at Career Expo

he Arkansas Department
of Career Education held
Ta Career Expo at the
Metroplex on August 15. More
than thirty companies were
on hand to talk to job seekers
about career opportunities.
The agency also showcased Associate Commissioner for Access
the various services that and Accommodations Nathan Winter
are available for people with (right) provided information about
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services' Stay
disabilities, adults in need of At Work/Return To Work program. DeCarlia Smith, ARS Human
Resources Administrator, (right) sat
a GED, and job interview and with Career Expo goers and provided
career readiness tips. tips on their resume.

Project Specialist Kimberly Freeman
(right) conducted one of the several
workshops that ARCareerEd provided Local businesses were looking to
about job-readiness. recruit new employees.

Administrative Specialist Laura
Thomas (left) and North Little Rock
Field Counselor Marsha Hays (right)
were happy to answer questions
regarding the assistance that the
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services
offers to people with disabilities
looking for a job.

Carlton Lawyer (right) represented
the State Approving Agency for Attendees filled out applications and
Veterans Training at the Career Expo. spoke with hiring businesses.

Be Pro Be Proud brought their
Workforce Workshop to the Career
Expo. The Workforce Workshop is North Little Rock Field Counselor
an interactive, informational mobile Lynda Olden (left) provided information Career Expo goers met with local
workshop. to expo-goers. businesses that are hiring.


Career Education and Workforce
Development Board

Hugh McDonald, Chairman, Little Rock
Senior Management Team Gina Radke, Vice Chairman, Sherwood
Adam Arroyos, Ph.D., Fayetteville
Jerry Cash, Harrison
Scott Copas, Little Rock
Charisse Childers, Ph.D., Director Michael Garner, Hensley
Lorna Claudio, Chief Financial Officer Stacy Gunderman, Batesville
Otis Dixon, Chief Information Officer Troy Keeping, Marion
Chip McAfee, Assistant Director of Trenia Miles, Ed.D., Deputy Director Steve Percival, Little Rock
Communications Bridget Bullard Criner, Associate Director Jenifer Price, Springdale
DeCarlia Smith, Human Resources Jeff Standridge, Conway
Administrator Keith Vire, Fayetteville
Richard Coleman, Personnel Manager Burton Weis, Fort Smith
Don Bellcock, Internal Auditor Ex-Officio Members
Richard Abernathy, Ed.D., Executive
Director, AR Association of Educational
D. Alan McClain, Commissioner Administrators
Joseph Baxter, Deputy Commissioner Daryl Bassett, Director, AR Department
Cody Waits, Deputy Director Carl Daughtery, Chief of Field Services/ of Workforce Services
Stephanie Isaacs, Associate Director Associate Commissioner Paul Beran, Ph.D., Chancellor, UA Fort
Jonathan Bibb, Administrator/Associate Smith
Commissioner, Arkansas Career Training Johnny Key, Commissioner, AR
Institute Department of Education
James McCune, Chief Financial Officer Maria Markham, Ph.D., Director, AR
Kathi Turner, Deputy Director Nathan Winter, Associate Commissioner Department of Higher Education
Mike Preston, Director, AR Economic
Cheryl Wiedmaier, Ph.D., Associate for Access & Accommodations Development Commission
Director Robert Treviño, Associate Commissioner, Bill Stovall, Executive Director, AR
Sonja Wright-McMurray, Associate Program, Planning Development & Community Colleges
Director for Special Programs Evaluation

ADULT EDUCATION Lonoke Small Business Program
501-683-2341 501-676-4490 501-683-3582
GED ® Monticello Stay At Work/ Return To Work
501-682-1980 870-367-9669 501-683-6052
ARKANSAS REHABILITATION North Little Rock Services for the
SERVICES 501-833-1490 Deaf & Hard of Hearing (SDHH)
Arkansas Career Training Institute Pine Bluff 501-686-2800
501-624-4411 870-534-2404 TAP (Telecommunications Access
Field Services Offices Russellville Program)
Batesville 479-890-5751 800-981-4463
870-793-4153 Searcy Transition Services
Benton 501-268-4542 501-682-5634
Booneville 870-773-2807 501-682-1040
479-675-3835 West Memphis Occupational Programs
Conway 870-735-4725 Agricultural Science and Technology
501-730-9725 Alternative Finance Program 501-682-2561
El Dorado 501-296-1663 Business/Marketing Technology
870-862-5451 Arkansas Governor's Commission on 501-682-1768
Fayetteville People with Disabilities Family & Consumer Sciences Education
479-582-1286 501-682-5317 501-682-1115
Fort Smith Arkansas Kidney Disease Commission Office of School Improvement
479-755-3300 (AKDC) 501-682-1616
Harrison 501-686-2807 Skilled and Technical Sciences
870-741-7153 Assistive Technology at Work ([email protected] 501-682-1271
Helena Work) State Approving Agency for Veterans
870-338-2753 501-683-3009 Training and Education
Hot Springs Business Engagement 501-324-9473
501-623-4479 501-296-1659 OFFICE OF SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
Jonesboro Increasing Capabilities Access 501-683-1152
870-972-0025 Network (ICAN) Apprenticeship
Little Rock 501-666-8868 501-682-1360


Check out these past issues of Job Ready

formerly known as The Career Counselor

End-of-the-Year 2016

Last Issue: August 2017

Fall 2016

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