New Mainers Resource Center 2018 Annual Report Executive Summary
New Mainers Resource Center Mission
The mission of the New Mainers Resource Center (NMRC) is to support Maine’s economic development by meeting employers’ demands for a skilled and culturally diverse workforce.
Serving nearly 4,000 students in 2017 – 2018, Portland Adult Education (PAE) has been supporting members of Maine’s immigrant communities to find success and build financial stability through workforce development programs designed specifically for new Mainers for over 11 years. NMRC allows PAE to develop both targeted programming for the unique needs of those who come to the U.S. with an advanced degree and professional experience as well as support workforce initiatives that are integrated throughout PAE’s programs.
Maine’s population has begun to decline. For the state to have a vibrant economy it will need to attract more foreign-born workers as well as retain and support the nearly 20,000 refugees and immigrants living in Southern Maine.
Barriers to Employment
Foreign-trained skilled professionals face many barriers as they seek to enter the Maine workforce. In addition to requiring an adequate level of English competency, these barriers include lack of information about career pathways, transferring credentials, US standards for resumes, interviews, and American workplace culture.
NMRC 2018 Program Data and Impact
- 398 people contacted NMRC for services
- 217 people were new in 2018; 181 were returning NMRC program participants
- 73% of new Mainers served by NMRC have a bachelor’s degree or higher
- 308 people received case management/career advising
- 95% of those eligible to work and receiving case management/career advising services found jobs
- 576 people participated in NMRC programmatic offerings designed to help overcome barriers and engage with employers (workshops, classes, presentations, etc.)
Conclusion – 2019 Goals and Future Direction
Looking at the goals that NMRC set for itself for 2018 it can be concluded that progress has been made but that effectively meeting the workforce needs of Maine’s new immigrants is an ever evolving process. NMRC’s goals and future directions for 2019 can be broken down as follows. NMRC must:
- Continue to pay attention to its structural or administrative components such as communication, data collection and analysis, and financing in order to deliver effective services
- Continue to reach out to and develop programming for those new Mainers who remain “stuck” in positions that do not provide career growth or opportunities
- Build on NMRC’s and PAE’s unique ability to meet both the needs of job seekers as well as those of employers through the development of more sector specific training and opportunities
- Move forward to build on the work it has done around professional licensing and credential evaluation and continue to advocate for greater understanding, removal of barriers and funding
- Work within PAE to determine how best to support and integrate workforce-related programming to meet the needs of current and future students.
To get our NMRC 2017 Annual Report, please on the link below