Workforce Development Summit on June 14
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Workforce Development Summit

Workforce Development Summit addresses local workforce and employment trends

Regional workforce development professionals will meet at the second annual Gaston College Workforce Development Summit, which takes place on Thursday, June 14, on the Dallas campus of Gaston College.

Employers throughout Gaston and Lincoln Counties are invited to the summit, which will feature representatives from the Centralina Workforce Development Board, the Gaston County Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Gaston Development Corporation, Gaston County Schools, the Gaston Economic Development Work Summit imageAssociation, the Gaston Workforce Development Board, Lincoln County Schools, and the Lincoln County Economic Development Association, as well as Gaston College faculty and staff.

Following a Breakfast and Networking session that begins at 8 a.m., Dr. Patricia Skinner, President of Gaston College, will welcome attendees to the summit. Dr. Dennis McElhoe, Vice President of Economic and Workforce Development, will present the agenda for the event, and Luke Upchurch, Director of Grants and Special Projects, will provide a Regional Data Update of statistics and information compiled since the June 2017 summit.

Next, a Panel Discussion on the State of Workforce and Economic Development in Gaston and Lincoln counties will take place. The panel members are Steve D’Avria, CEO and President of the Gaston Regional Chamber; Brett Buchanan, Director of Career and Technical Education for Gaston County Schools; Mark Cramer, Executive Director of the Greater Gaston Development Association; John Dancoff, Existing Industry Manager for the Lincoln Economic Development Association; Malissa Gordon, Existing Industry Manager for the Gaston Economic Development Association; David Hollars, Executive Director of the Centralina Workforce Development Board; Angela Karchmer, Director of the Gaston Workforce Development Board; and Dr. Cale Sain, Director of Career and Technical Education and Principal of the School of Technology in Lincoln County Schools.

A Panel Discussion on Gaston College’s efforts to address employers’ workforce needs will follow. On that panel are Virgil Cox, Dean of Industrial and Engineering Technologies; Nick Edwards, Dean of Business and Information Technologies; Jill Lutz, Associate Vice President of Economic and Workforce Development; and Lynn Nichols, Associate Dean of Health and Human Services.

“Assembling representatives from the workforce development boards, chambers of commerce, economic development associations, and education in one setting provides a unique opportunity for regional employers to interact with those responsible for addressing the workforce needs of Gaston and Lincoln counties. It is also an excellent opportunity for the College’s faculty to hear directly from regional employers on what their current and future workplace needs are and what credentials their potential employees must have to help them stay competitive,” said Dr. Dennis McElhoe, Vice President of Economic and Workforce Development. “With the information we hope to gather from the summit, Gaston College, in collaboration with our workforce development partners who are participating in the summit, can design programs, short-term courses, and specialized services to assist with filling the region’s talent pipeline.

For information about Continuing Education courses at Gaston College, call 704-922-2244 or visit


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