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Linking Workforce Development, Education & Economic Development In Armstrong, Butler & Indiana Counties

Draft 2016 HPO List Available

The 2016 High Priority Occupation (HPO) “draft” list has been released.  Petitions are now being accepted to add occupations to the List!

Please note that the Center for Workforce Information and Analysis (CWIA) is grandfathering the 2015 HPO list over for this year; but opening up a “petition-only” period for Local Workforce Development Boards (LWDB) and Training Providers to add occupations to their local lists.  The program year for 2016 will begin July 1, 2016 and end August 31, 2017.  The 2017 program year will begin September 1, 2017 and end August 31, 2018.  June, July and August of 2016 have been added to the 2016 program year due to many changes from WIA to WIOA.

High Priority Occupations (HPOs) are a direct result of Pennsylvania's industry-driven approach to workforce development. The purpose of the statewide and regional HPO lists is to align workforce training and education investments with occupations that are in demand by employers, have higher skill needs and are most likely to provide family sustaining wages. Combining statistical data with regional expert input allow for a complete picture of the actual workforce needs of the commonwealth.

The HPO list is created using federal and state labor market data as well as projections based on U.S. Department of Labor models. Occupations are selected based on the importance to the industry cluster (PA has chosen 12 industry clusters based on the potential for growth or their overall importance to the stability of Pennsylvania’s economy), annual job openings, self-sustaining wage threshold, employment loss or nominal wage decline, occupational unemployment rates of 10% or higher and ration of training completers to job openings.   An eligible training provider must offer a program aligned to one of the designated HPOs in their area.  This connection is established solely via the CIP-SOC crosswalk tool that aligns education and training programs with the occupations that require those skill sets.

The CWIA realizes that statewide statistical analysis and projections can miss differences and dynamics in regional and local markets.  The ensure the HPO list has appropriate input from regional businesses, the petition process was put into place.

Local Workforce Development Boards (LWDB) or Workforce Development Boards (WDB) can petition the Department of Labor & Industry to add HPOs to their regional list based on one of three justification options described in the attached HPO policy.  

Unmet Employer Demand

Career Pathway

Regional Workforce Initiatives/Sector Partnerships

Local educational institutions (K-12 and higher education) and economic development agencies can petition their LWDB to propose adding an HPO. The petitioning organization must provide documented evidence that wage threshold and job openings criteria described in the HPO Policy

**Occupations successfully added via this petitioning process will appear on the local HPO list for three years (unless notified otherwise).

*Refer to the HPO Policy below for more information on the HPO process, the requirements to file a petition and the petition application. 

The deadline to file a petition to TCWIB, Inc. is June 10, 2016.

All petitions approved by the TCWIB Board at the 6/17/16 meeting, will be forwarded to the CWIA on or before July 17, 2016 for final review and approval

Even though the actual “petition” indicates that it can be directly emailed or mailed to the CWIA, all petitions should be submitted to the LWDB and approved by the LWDB prior to submitting to CWIA

To find more information on the HPO Policy, petitions, CIP/SOC crosswalk and/or high priority occupations, please go to the Center for Workforce Information & Analysis’s (CWIA) website:   http://www.workstats.dli.pa.gov/Products/HPOs/Pages/default.aspx#.VxE8SocUUcU.

Please contact Melinda Schultheis, 724-282-9341, ext. 101 with any questions regarding the HPO lists and/or the petition process.

Links to needed files:

Draft High Priority Occupation List

PA High Priority Occupation Policy

Tri-County Draft High Priority Occupation List

Draft High Priority Occupation List by Workforce Development Area