COLUMBIA—Seven counties were recognized today for achieving certification through the South Carolina Work Ready Communities (SCWRC) initiative. The counties are: Barnwell, Chesterfield, Darlington, Dillon, Lee, Lexington, and Marion.
Gov. Nikki Haley announced that more than half of South Carolina’s counties are now certified as work ready, continuing to outpace the nation in an initiative that showcases the skilled workforce that businesses require in a competitive economy.
“We are well on our way to becoming the nation’s first certified work ready state, and that is a huge reason to celebrate in every part of South Carolina,” Gov. Haley said. “This is a perfect example of Team South Carolina coming together to prove how committed we are to training a highly skilled workforce that is capable of meeting every need a company in our state may have.”
The seven newly certified counties have met all needed workforce and education goals, demonstrating to businesses a strong local workforce and commitment to economic growth. The Palmetto State now has 29 counties with this designation, which is more than any other state in the nation.
“Seven more counties gaining certification illustrates just how committed South Carolina is to developing a world-class workforce,” said Cheryl M. Stanton, executive director of the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce. “We have seen record employment highs in our state over the past year, and with more than half of South Carolina’s counties now certified as work ready communities, this will further pave the way to filling those open jobs with qualified workers.”
To become a South Carolina Work Ready Community, a county has to reach or exceed goals in earning National Career Readiness Certificates (achieved through WorkKeys® testing), meet or exceed the three-year graduation rate average or improvement percentage, and engage business support.
The latest work ready counties join the ranks of 22 others that have been certified since the initiative began in 2013. Find a map of certified counties here.
For additional information, visit www.scworkready.org.