NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- To maximize employment opportunities sparked by ongoing revitalization, the City of New Rochelle has partnered with Westhab and STRIVE to implement a multi-tiered job placement and training program. A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new employment office, the “First Source Referral Center,” at 247 North Avenue was held on Friday, May 26.
The program’s goal is to create employment opportunities for City residents who are currently not employed or in school. This initiative is an integral component of New Rochelle’s economic opportunity and non-discrimination policies, and is funded through the community benefits funds agreement with developers at no cost to taxpayers. New Rochelle’s redevelopment plan impacts 279 acres of land around the downtown core and is expected to attract more than $4 billion in new investment.
“As part of our redevelopment efforts, we are confident this program will prove extremely beneficial to our community by creating ample opportunity for those in need of employment and willing to bring their skills and talents to our City’s great initiative,” said New Rochelle Council Member Jared Rice.
Services include skills assessments, job training, job readiness programs and placement. "We are excited to be chosen as the operator of the First Source Referral Center, and bring our employment expertise to the City of New Rochelle" said Westhab's Director of Employment Joanne Dunn. "Our program's client-centric approach is complemented by STRIVE's signature CORE attitudinal job readiness training and Westhab's job placement/retention strategies. The combination along with the significant benefit of industry sector-based trainings will help unemployed individuals in New Rochelle become gainfully employed."
The program began earlier this year with an initiative sponsored by New Rochelle’s Master Developer, RDRXR, to hold a series of events leading to a job fair for construction trades and potential hiring at their first downtown New Rochelle development site, 587 Main Street. The event began with two informational workshops on careers in the construction trades, featuring speakers from RXR Realty, Hudson Meridian Construction, the City of New Rochelle, and Westhab.
“Working closely with Westhab, STRIVE and the City of New Rochelle, we have developed a program that will help us fill these coveted construction positions as work at 587 Main Street and other sites gets fully underway,” said Seth Pinsky of RDRXR. “Beyond that, the program will help so many more local residents get the training and career guidance necessary for other construction jobs and opportunities available throughout the region.”
In addition to careers in construction, the First Source Referral Center will also include training and placement in fields such as health care and retail.
“Unlike the majority of local hiring initiatives, First Source’s extensive program not only puts individuals in touch with potential employers, but offers the necessary certification and training to adequately prepare job seekers for job opportunities, creating not just jobs, but careers,” said Ayanna Wayner, Deputy Commissioner of Economic Development for the City of New Rochelle.
“Our development efforts are helping to make New Rochelle the ideal place to live, work and grow, but that’s not enough,” said New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson. “It’s also vital that new investment translate into good jobs and career opportunities for New Rochelle residents. The First Source job training program will help ensure that our entire community benefits from positive change.”
As one of the most ambitious downtown development initiatives in the history of the Hudson Valley, New Rochelle’s development plan will extend to more than 12 million square feet of new construction including up to 2.4 million square feet of prime office space, one million square feet of retail, 6,370 housing units and 1,200 hotel rooms.