The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program Celebrates 15th Year Anniversary

Karla Roth-Bardinas

Think Media Communications or 732-996-9789

Trenton, NJ, October 20, 2022 – The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program celebrates its 15th year anniversary and has provided free training to more than 200,000 employees at New Jersey Community Colleges from more than 12,000 employers since its inception in 2007.

The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program is a partnership of the New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA), The New Jersey Community College Consortium for Workforce and Economic Development, and the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. The partners, representing business, higher education, and state government, came together to ensure New Jersey businesses have a well-trained and highly skilled workforce to ensure economic growth and prosperity.

“New Jersey’s 18 Community Colleges have provided critical education and training – from English as a Second Language to computer skills – to tens of thousands of employees, improving the workforce and bottom line for businesses. Our customized training, aligned to the needs of employers, has helped families improve their circumstances by providing skills that are in-demand for career mobility. The past 15 years of our Basic Skills Training Program have worked to strengthen the state’s economic growth and prosperity for employers and employees,” said Catherine Starghill, Executive Director, New Jersey Community College Consortium for Workforce and Economic Development, and Vice President, Strategy and Partnerships, New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC).

The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program offers the following technology training:  Windows®, MS Office 365®, MS Word®, Excel®, PowerPoint®, and Outlook®. Courses in Databases, PC Data Storage, and Cloud Computing are also available. Enhanced Business Skills Training is available for Verbal, Written, and Customer Service. Communications courses are available in Measurements/Mathematics, Professionalism, Problem Solving/Critical Thinking, Team Building, Time Management, and Team Leadership. Language Training is also available for English as a Second Language (three levels), Spanish for Managers, and Spanish in the Workplace (two levels). The training and education can be held on Community College campuses, online, and/or at the business location.

“The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Program is by far the most successful workforce development program in the state, allowing businesses to send employees to Community Colleges to learn the skills they need to do their jobs and advance in their careers,” said NJBIA President and CEO Michele Siekerka. “Under this successful partnership, the NJCCC manages the program, NJBIA does outreach to companies whose employees can be helped by training, and the NJDOL provides funding and fiscal oversight.”

“For a healthcare organization to run, its employees must have up-to-date knowledge on new equipment, technologies, practices, and regulations in various areas.  The NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program allows us to offer a wide variety of courses to develop, upskill, and retain our staff – whether they are looking for ways to better serve their customers, or hoping to level up their careers,” said Dawn GelsiCollins, Network Director of Culture and Engagement, Inspira Health.

“As a people-centric organization, we pride ourselves on giving opportunities from the ground up. We recognize that success is more than just making the numbers; it’s about investing in your people and giving them tools they need to succeed… that’s why the NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skills Training Program works,” said Cyd Morales, People Ops Manager, Kinetic Brands.

“We have proudly utilized the NJ Workplace Literacy and Basic Skill Training Program through Middlesex County College to develop the skills and capabilities of our employees, resulting in better organizational effectiveness. The MS Word and MS Excel programs have greatly helped enhance the computer skills of our employees and improved overall productivity. Further, their ESL programs have helped non-English speaking workers to better their English communication skills, which helps them to better understand their work instructions and carry out their job in a safe and productive manner. As these programs are conducted within our premises and/or online, we have had very minimal to no work disruption,” said Prithvi Thularam, Human Resources Manager, MSI Surfaces in Edison. “I encourage other businesses in need to try the Basic Skills Program, and we look forward to our continued partnership with Middlesex County College and this program for years to come.”

About The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA)

The New Jersey Business & Industry Association is the nation’s largest and most impactful statewide employer organization. As the state’s largest voice for business, NJBIA provides practical information, money-saving services, and powerful advocacy in Trenton for its member companies in order to build a more prosperous New Jersey. Learn more about NJBIA at and follow @njbia on Twitter or

About the New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC)

The New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC) was created in 1989 to support and promote New Jersey’s 18 Community Colleges that now enroll more than 300,000 people each year in credit, non-credit, and workforce development courses at more than 70 campuses throughout the state. More than 200,000 students – over half of all undergraduate students in public colleges and universities in the state – are enrolled at New Jersey’s Community Colleges. The Community Colleges also enroll nearly 100,000 students in non-credit programs and partner with thousands of businesses to meet their training and workforce needs.

The primary goal of New Jersey’s 18 Community Colleges is to meet the ever-changing educational needs of our great state’s residents. Today, through more than 1,700 degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit courses and customized workforce training programs, New Jersey Community Colleges are helping more students than ever. Further, equity and access priorities are advanced every day with over half of the total undergraduate enrollment in New Jersey Community Colleges coming from minority and traditionally underrepresented populations.

The New Jersey Community College Consortium for Workforce and Economic Development is a subsidiary of NJCCC. The Consortium brings together the Community Colleges as a collective to provide workforce development training.

To learn more about NJCCC and New Jersey’s Community Colleges, go to Follow us @NJCommColleges on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube to learn more about our latest programs and initiatives.

NJCCC Proven Cover

About NJCCC:

New Jersey’s 18 agile and innovative Community Colleges are prepared to lead in the response to and recovery from this public health and economic crisis and to secure a brighter future for all New Jerseyans. The New Jersey Council of County Colleges provides statewide leadership for the advancement of New Jersey Community Colleges, performs coordinating responsibilities as required by law, and coordinates statewide efforts to build a skilled workforce and improve student success. We encourage you to visit our website at