Workforce Development Grants


Westchester Community College’s Professional Development Center has been awarded three grants to work closely with members of our business community in the nonprofit sector.  The grant recipients include the Hawthorne Foundation, Hudson Valley Hospital and Nonprofit Westchester, a county association of nonprofits grouped together as a consortium.


Hawthorne Foundation Inc.

The Hawthorne Foundation is a 250-person agency providing services to children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities. Its mission is to provide quality education, habilitative, vocational, and recreational programs to their clients.

The primary service providers within the Hawthorne Foundation are their Direct Service Professionals (DSP’s).  The New York State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) is rolling out an initiative to transform the primary role of the DSP from care-giving to coaching.

This grant will provide the Hawthorne Foundation with the training to help their DSP’s transition to their new coaching role. In addition, the DSP role is often a high-turnover position and this program will improve retention by giving DSP’s the incentive to stay employed in this field or organization.

The Hawthorne Foundation has identified 7 program topics for inclusion in the grant.  They are:

  • DSP Competency Training
  • Person Centered Planning
  • Observation and Feedback Skills for Supervisors
  • Communicating with Families and Team Members
  • Demonstrating Professionalism
  • Advocacy for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
  • Managing Personal Biases

A target audience of 70 individuals will participate in some or all of the 7 topics to be covered. There will be a total of 29 cohort groups each open to 10 participants bringing the total of training seats used to 290.


New York-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital

Hudson Valley Hospital, now a regional hospital under New York-Presbyterian Hospital, is dedicated to serving the health care needs of the community and providing quality, comprehensive medical care in Westchester County.  Offering state-of-the-art diagnostic treatment, education and preventive services, the Hospital is committed to improving the quality of life in the community.

In fulfilling this mission, the Hospital will strive to continuously improve the care provided and develop and offer programs, facilities, systems and alliances that most effectively respond to community health care needs.

Hudson Valley Hospital has identified the following workforce development needs for incumbent workers of the hospital:

  • Implementing Process Change
  • Leadership / Management Training
  • Language Skills
    • ESL
    • Spanish for Healthcare Workers

Healthcare is one of the most important and fastest growing sectors in the county.  The hospital includes a wide range and diversity of employees and various staff positions throughout the organization.  These programs will help Hudson Valley fulfill its mission to effectively respond to community health care needs by investing in their employees and workforce development.   The grant will cover four programs and approximately 120 students (employees).


Nonprofit Westchester

Nonprofit Westchester is an association of nonprofits to form a collective organization throughout Westchester County.  Nonprofit Westchester was formed four years ago and has a focus on:

  1. Building capacity of organizations (e.g. giving them the tools to be effective, get work done and be successful);
  2. Marketing – strengthening and improving awareness and knowledge of nonprofits throughout the county;
  3. Advocating for the needs of nonprofits through legislation in the county.

The grant provides the option for smaller nonprofits to benefit from workforce training opportunities through their participation in this consortium.  Leveraging the consortium approach model, the grant will enable broad exposure to a number of agencies throughout Westchester County.

Nonprofit Westchester has identified the following programs as the greatest workforce development needs for their membership:

  • Business Writing
  • Process Mapping and Analysis
  • Public Speaking
  • Brand Management

This grant will enable many organizations to access training that would otherwise not be affordable or accessible to them in many cases due to their size (e.g. not having enough employees to hold company training programs).  The consortium approach also positions WCC as a community partner with the largest employment sector in the county.   The grant will enable approximately 60 students to participate and gain specific skills across the four subjects listed above.

For questions or information, please contact Jim Irvine at 914-606-6658 (
or Paulette Pellani at 914-606-6669 (