Building Workers

By Sarah Gassel March 31, 2012

Building WorkersCareerEdge Funders Collaborative, a nonprofit workforce development program launched in September 2010, has helped more than a thousand local low-skilled workers find jobs or get the training they need to advance or stay employed.

CareerEdge partners with employers like Tervis Tumbler and Sarasota Memorial Hospital that need specific skills or certifications from their workforces, and supports the training necessary to meet those needs. Low-skilled employees can then retain their jobs or advance in their careers, creating entry-level positions open to less-skilled workers and newcomers.

CareerEdge is one of 31 sites of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions. Funded primarily by private money, CareerEdge began with $1 million from the Knight Foundation and is supported by organizations such as Microsoft, Bank of America and the Gulf Coast Community Foundation. Its public funders include the Sarasota County Government and Manatee Community Action Agency.

At press time, 284 job seekers in Manatee and Sarasota found employment in fast-growing sectors of healthcare and manufacturing, 220 received raises, 147 were promoted and 1,000 of the already employed received training that gives them the potential to move up their respective career ladders. Additionally, 239 employees at Blake Medical Center received trauma certifications, a credential necessary to retain their positions there.

Executive director Mireya Eavey hopes CareerEdge will attract relocating companies. “We hope to have an aligned workforce system in Sarasota and Bradenton where we work together to end the skill gaps, the unfilled jobs and unemployment,” she says.

CareerEdge Map

1 Blake Medical Center

2020 59th Street West, Bradenton, FL 34209

Employees in program: 556

Employees promoted: 19

Employees who received raises: 20

Average hourly wage increase: $2.33


2 Kobernick House

1951 N Honore Ave, Sarasota, FL 34235

Employees trained: 213

Employees promoted: 19

Employees who received raises: 30

Average hourly wage increase: $1.74


3 Life Care Center of Sarasota

8104 Tuttle Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34243

Employees trained: 45

Employees promoted: 2

Employees who received raises: 13

Average hourly wage increase: $1.76


4 Manatee Memorial Hospital

206 2nd Street East, Bradenton, FL 34208

Employees trained: 39

Employees promoted: 14

Employees who received raises: 17

Average hourly wage increase: $1.35


5 Pines of Sarasota

1501 N Orange Ave, Sarasota, FL 34236

Employees trained: 76

Employees promoted: 2

Employees who received raises: 2

Average hourly wage increase: $9.33


6 Sarasota Memorial Hospital

1700 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34239

Employees trained: 44

Employees promoted: 1

Employees who received raises: 15

Average hourly wage increase: $1.13


7 Tidewell Hospice

Sarasota House: 5957 Rand Boulevard, Sarasota, FL 34238

Employees trained: 28

Employees promoted: 2

Employees who received raises: 23

Average hourly wage increase: $1.74


8 PGT Industries

1070 Technology Drive, Venice, FL 34275

Employees trained: 221

Employees promoted: 7

Employees who received raises: 16

Average hourly wage increase: $2.19


9 Tervis Tumbler Company

201 Triple Diamond Boulevard, North Venice, FL 34275

Employees trained: 159

Employees promoted: 78

Employees who received raises: 78

Average hourly wage increase: $0.86

(weighted average)


10 Advanced Masonry Systems

5403 Ashton Court, Sarasota, FL 34233

Employees trained: 11

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