Marano Fellows Class of 2011

Name: Lyn Kugel

PathWays PA

Location: Holmes, PA
Primary Industry Sector: Healthcare
Type of Organization: Non-profit, CBO

“Sector work is extremely rewarding – there is great joy in knowing that your efforts and initiatives have helped someone access and complete training – seeing the pride in their success, knowing they can double or triple their earnings and meet the family’s needs.”

Organizational Mission: For over 30 year, PathWays PA’s mission has been to help women, teens, children and families achieve economic independence and family well-being. The vision of PathWays PA is that one day the families we serve will feel safe, lead healthy, self-reliant lives, and become positive contributors to their communities.

Interest in Sector Work: PathWays PA manages a healthcare industry partnership that will be expanding from a County to regional initiative this year. Our partnership encompasses the full spectrum of healthcare providers, identifying employers’ workforce skills gaps and offering trainings to help low-wage, low-skilled workers get the skills and trainings necessary to fill those gaps and advance in healthcare career ladders/lattices. PathWays PA chose the healthcare sector because it offers opportunities for workers to double or triple their wages and gain family sustaining earnings with relatively short trainings. The Partnership targets low-wage, low-skilled workers who face multiple barriers to advancement – they typically have had limited education, have been out of school for a number of years, lack confidence in their abilities to succeed in education. These workers are often juggling shift work and family responsibilities which can make pursuing education a challenge. Our strategies have included building “ramps” and opportunities to earn college credit to encourage further education and training. One of the concerns these workers now face is the increased pressure from funders to show “impact” in the form of certifications, wage increases, promotions – all very valuable but to attain these results, the workers with the greatest skills deficits may be precluded from accessing the skills they need and may not be prepared to participate in trainings offered.