Systemic poverty, the healthcare worker crisis, and providing the best care possible to our seniors, are among the challenges we currently face. However, Dwyer Workforce Development believes it has a viable ‘nursing solution’ to address all three.
Through workforce development CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) and GNA (Geriatric Nursing Assistant) job training, job placement, nursing school scholarships, wraparound services and more, Dwyer Workforce Development is empowering unemployed and underemployed members of the community to pursue life-changing careers in the senior healthcare industry.
Dwyer Workforce Development, was founded in 2021, by Jack Dwyer and his wife Nancy along with their daughters Emily and Kelsey, as part of their commitment to give back to the industries and communities that have shaped their lives. Barb Clapp serves as its CEO.
Dwyer is the owner and founder of Capital Funding Group and CFB Bank, which are headquartered in Baltimore. The companies provide banking and finance solutions to the business community and the national healthcare market.
“My family and I are really passionate about helping poor neighborhoods,” said Dwyer. “We want to give them a career path and job opportunities that we’ve been lucky to have the benefit of ourselves. The career path that I know is the [healthcare] industry that I’m in, which has been suffering for years with workforce problems. The pandemic only exasperated the nursing home, assisted living industry and other healthcare sectors. Hospitals also had a severe crisis, hiring employees. Our passion is to hopefully eliminate poverty.
“We want to provide people with opportunities and a career in the industry that I’ve been dealing with for over 45 years,” said Dwyer. “The goal is to train people to become CNAs. The job doesn’t have to be with my company. It can be with any company that is paying a decent wage. Ultimately, if they accomplish that, Dwyer Workforce Development is going to pay for their college education to become an RN.”
The healthcare training non-profit is located at 1422 Clarkview Road in Baltimore.
“Many RNs in my industry go on to become Regional Vice Presidents, and in some instances the President,” said Dwyer. “There’s a career path that can start on the CNA level and hopefully why not the President of the company? You can make a fantastic living being a RN, and we can provide a career path.”
Dwyer Workforce Development has scholars enrolled in its training program in Greater Baltimore and anticipates 50 Scholars will be fully trained and active in the healthcare workforce by early Spring 2022. The Dwyer Workforce Development program begins with a nine-week CNA job training and certification program. Graduates of the CNA program are invited to participate in the 13-week GNA job training and certification program or immediately enter their job placement services.
After job placement, Dwyer tracks their graduates to support their job retention and help them develop their healthcare career goal plans over several years. Graduates who reach measurable milestones in their goal plans are awarded scholarships to attend nursing school and earn their RN (Registered Nurse) license.
“It’s zero cost to participate,” said Dwyer. “We started the program here in Baltimore, and we want to really significantly grow it in Maryland. We’re in Maryland, so first and foremost that’s where we want to focus on.”
The philanthropist says he is working on the acquisition of several nursing homes, which will also help to support the mission of Dwyer Workforce Development.
Clapp joined Dwyer Workforce Development as CEO in 2021. A successful entrepreneur, Clapp was the founder and CEO of Clapp Communications, an international communications company. The business leader has received numerous honors including The Daily Record’s ‘Most Influential Maryland’ and ‘Most Admired CEO’ awards.
Clapp said she grew up in challenging situations and has always been committed to giving a voice to the voiceless, providing hope, tools, and solutions to help people “get out” of their situations and achieve success. Clapp sold her communications firm, in 2020 so she could commit her time to the nonprofit industry— and now, Dwyer Workforce Development.
“We’re trying to get people out of systemic poverty,” said Clapp, also noting the organization’s efforts in assisting women. “We want to give people who were born into different circumstances an opportunity.”
Dwyer and Clapp said future plans include creating a cohesive ecosystem where all needs are met for Scholars. The two said this includes housing, access to childcare, food, and care for elderly family members to help Scholars focus on their training and building a positive and rewarding life.
For more information about Dwyer Workforce Development call (410) 513-8740 or visit www.dwyerworkforcedev.org.