Tuesday, January 25, 2011

State support for startups, and career readiness certificates

Two statewide news stories from The Oregonian caught our attention today. Both involve state government initiatives: one to support businesses, and the other to connect jobseekers with employers.

Supporting Startups

The Oregon Growth Account, an economic development fund supported through state lottery revenue, voted to invest up to $175,000 for five angel investing conferences around the state. The conferences -- in Portland, Bend, The Dalles, the Willamette Valley, and Medford -- aim to fund the entrepreneurial community in these areas. Conferences invite startup companies to to present their business plans to wealthy investors (or "angels"), who choose the most promising investments to back. The conferences also serve to educate potential angel investors on how to evaluate investments and select companies to fund.

For more details, read the full story on The Oregonian website.

Career Readiness Certificate Program
Workers and job applicants across Oregon are beginning to take tests for career-readiness certificates. The certificates are intended to measure workplace skills for specific jobs, and enable workers to demonstrate their qualifications for various positions. Over 4,400 Oregonians have already earned certificates. The program is gaining momentum nationally, so job applicants may also find employers who recognize the certificate in other states.

The full article has additional information and program details!

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