One of the sad impacts of the pandemic has been a downshift in women´s careers in what is being called ´she-cession´. Many women have downshifted their careers or left the workforce altogether amid the pandemic. Numbers in Rhode Island, US, show that more than 16,000 women have left the workforce since March 2020. By contrast, male labor force participation has increased by 2,800 in the same period. As we look beyond the pandemic, remote work offers a clear path to employment as it allows women to pursue flexible opportunities without having to commute long distances or travel.
Keeping the same in mind, Rhode Island is rebuilding a more equal and resilient economy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic through the Back to Work RI initiative.
The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training (DLT), SheWorks!, a social impact company focused on empowering women by connecting them with some of the world’s most exciting remote work opportunities, and Polaris MEP, a non-profit which provides business improvement services to grow Rhode Island’s manufacturing industry have joined hands to train women in Rhode Island.
The industries hit hardest by the pandemic are predominantly female-dominated, and distance learning has forced many women to leave the workforce to care for their children
The program will provide them with free virtual training in remote-readiness and digital marketing skills for global employability through the SheWorks! platform. Participants will also be connected to local and international remote job opportunities with companies that are part of the SheWorks! global marketplace, and they will have access to Polaris MEP’s workforce services, including recruitment and placement.
“Women have been disproportionately impacted by the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The industries hit hardest by the pandemic are predominantly female-dominated, and distance learning has forced many women to leave the workforce to care for their children,” said Matthew Weldon, DLT Acting Director. “We’re excited to be partnering with SheWorks! to create pathways to competitive jobs for women who have faced barriers to employment.”
“SheWorks! is committed to hacking female unemployment, because we know it is the key to the post-pandemic economic recovery,” said Silvina Moschini, Founder and CEO, SheWorks! “We empower women around the world by connecting them with remote opportunities and providing remote-readiness training, and we are proud to partner with the DLT to now help women in Rhode Island get back to work in highly-competitive fields.”
“Manufacturing helps drive Rhode Island’s economy. The sector offers quality jobs with good wages and opportunities for growth, however women are underrepresented in the industry,” noted Lindsey Brickle, Workforce Manager, Polaris MEP. “Polaris MEP believes remote work can make manufacturing careers more attractive to women, especially those facing barriers to traditional work environments. Skills training and the SheWorks! platform will make it easier for women to enter manufacturing careers and advance.”
The application process is open now through March 31st. Women are encouraged to apply early, as only 500 will be selected to participate in the free online six week program, which consists of independent coursework and live virtual group classes for engaging and interactive learning. Each program track requires a commitment of at least three hours per week. Upon successful completion of the training, participants will receive a certification and be featured on the SheWorks! talent marketplace platform, connecting with a network of global companies seeking certified remote-ready talent.
Program certification tracks include:
- Facebook Certified Digital Marketing Associate, which covers foundational advertising concepts on Facebook, Instagram and Messenger. This track prepares women to take the exam to become Facebook Certified Digital Marketing associates.
- Remote Work Certification, which covers the essential skills, mindsets, methodologies and tools needed to thrive in the new digital job market, preparing them to be successful remote workers.
Aspiring women can learn more or to apply for the program here.