Etown College’s workforce grant aimed at boosting area’s economy

Seeking to positively impact the local workforce and economy, Elizabethtown College has been awarded $978,285 from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry. 

The grant is part of a nearly $2.2 million grant from the Lancaster County Workforce Development Board (LCWDB) and was awarded for the Near Completer project: Achieve. The project provides Pennsylvanian opportunities to complete an undergraduate degree program or unfinished certificate in an occupation that features family-sustaining wage and is in high demand. 

Elizabethtown College President Betty Rider said the college looks forward to seeing the program’s impact on the area’s economy. 

“We recognize the need within our community for providing today’s employees with the skills, knowledge, and credentials needed to remain competitive in a global market,” Rider said in a release. “We are confident that through innovative practices within E-town’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies and with the help of this grant, we can ensure students achieve their educational goals.”

ACHIEVE is a collaborative project paced by LCWDB in partnership with Elizabethtown College, Millersville University, Pennsylvania College of Art and Design, Lancaster Chamber, and PA CareerLink Lancaster County. ACHIEVE seeks to enable learners to gain employment in high-priority occupations through a variety of educational options and provide support services for the challenges that adult learners face while pursuing higher education. To accommodate work, life, and school balance, programs are offered in an online format.

Offering convenient and flexible undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as micro-credential options for students to fit their educational goals into their daily routines, Elizabethtown College’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies (SGPS) has had for more than 70 years a direct and positive impact on the workforce and economy of both Lancaster County and throughout the South-Central Pennsylvania region.

SGPS seeks to reward educational efforts by accepting and applying a student’s credits from previous institutions, including Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) credits based on past professional and military experience, making it achievable for a student to complete within a year a degree at Elizabethtown College.

“We offer adults relevant, high-demand, and affordable programs to further their education on their own timeline,” Elizabethtown College Vice President for Enrollment Management John F. Champoli said. “This grant will assist our efforts to ensure pursuing undergraduate coursework is accessible and attainable for all who desire.”

Site of former Lancaster nightclub purchased for $900,000 

With an eye toward expansion, Lancaster’s Pennsylvania College of Art & Design has purchased a neighboring building that housed a popular nightclub for more than three decades. 

The college, at 204 N. Prince St., bought the old Chameleon Club, which has entrances at 224 N. Prince and 223 N. Water St., for $900,000, according to a release. 

Before it was the Chameleon, the historic property served as the Fraternal Order of Eagles social club for 85 years. 

Options for the building include student/artist housing, studios, exhibition and innovation spaces, and spaces supporting the institution’s new Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and its future Certificate Educational Programs in Live Experience Design. 

PCA&D’s president, Michael Molla, and its board of trustees will decide how the acquisition best fits with the college’s “The Art of Transformation, Designing Our Future” strategic plan. 

“The potential to keep the cultural heritage of the performance aspect of the Chameleon Club alive is exciting,” Molla said in the release. “We are truly excited to support, engage and retain the ongoing vibrancy of the creative workforce and the economic impact the arts and culture bring to our downtown communities here in Lancaster and within our region.” 

He added: “Taking advantage of this opportunity now was an important step for the college’s future, as it would be unlikely that this opportunity, steps away from our front door, in all likelihood may not become available again for the next 40 to 80 years.”