Plenary Sessions Day 1
- Opening Plenary: Ready to Work's Sustained Impact - RTW Grants are entering the final year of the four-year grant cycle and made significant accomplishments. Robin Fernkas and Megan Baird reflected on the overall impact of the RTW grant program, the trends and promising practices that were used to support the long-term unemployed, and how efforts can inform the future work of the larger workforce system.
- Sustainability Planning- Projects across the country vary in myriad ways, but all strive toward a shared goal: sustaining their work beyond the initial grant period. Sustaining a program requires action and focusing on four sustainable strategies; program evaluation; developing a succession plan; partnerships; and funding.In this session, participants heard from their peers as they highlighted their effective program innovations followed by small round table discussions, strategies and tips on moving individual grantee sustainability plans forward.
- Program Evaluation: Building Evidence- The Evaluation of the Ready to Work's Partnership Grant Program- The RTW Evaluation examined research questions that addressed expected outputs, short-term outcomes, and long-term outcomes to determine the effect of program education and training services and the range of supportive services on impacts for individual participation.
Plenary Sessions Day 2
- Plenary Session: Customer Centered Design Overview- Virginia Hamilton illustrated the discovery-based journey and methods of Customer Center Design (CCD), and how grantees can use the approach with their partners and stakeholders. Virginia provided an overview of tools to help grantees shift from a mindset of compliance to a focus on customer outcomes. This session prepared grantees for the day two case study activities on how to incorporate CCD into their program design.
- Grants Management: Grant Program Close Out- This session provided grantees with the opportunity to learn how to successfully close out the RTW grant and leave a lasting impression with the U.S. Department of Labor.
- Breakout Workshops: Peer Consultancies- Brain Games- Three selected grantees discussed challenges pertaining to their grant program. Peers provides strategies or solutions related to their challenge.
- Closing Plenary: Next Steps Action Planning and Wrap Up- This session provided an opportunity to share important findings and takeaways from the convening, and identify key upcoming technical assistance activities that will help support grantees. This session included a brief awards ceremony for grantees (certificates are provided).